Marcus Rashford owes his form to new culture at Man Utd
#Marcus #Rashford #owes #form #culture #Man #Utd Welcome to Alaska Green Light Blog, here is the new story we have for you today:
Manchester United fans would have been forgiven for asking if they would get old Marcus Rashford back after a bulging and sluggish 2021/22 season.
The hometown star, a national hero for his work off the field, stopped putting the numbers on it. A shoulder injury that lasted for years didn’t help, but even after surviving the operation in the summer of 2021, the spark that had previously made him something special was gone.
This was a player who scored more than 20 goals in consecutive seasons between 2019 and 2021 but only netted five times last season. That was the lowest tally of his entire career, although he fell short of the eight goals he scored in just 11 games aged 18 at the end of 2015/16.
Now, Rashford couldn’t be further from this version of himself.
He was the difference as United beat Everton in the FA Cup at Old Trafford on Friday night, set up the early start, forced the decisive own goal and then sealed the result with their own goal from the penalty spot in injury time.
Everton couldn’t live with his pace and direct running, coming in from the left. But he also delivered the end product and was the personification of calm as he waited for Jordan Pickford to flinch at first and flick the ball late from 12 yards to the opposite side of the unguarded net.
Rashford has continued his goal-scoring record in every game since the World Cup – now up to five and counting. His injury-time penalty against the Toffees also means he is the first United player in more than 10.5 years to score in seven consecutive home games in all competitions. The last to accomplish this feat was Wayne Rooney in the early months of 2012.
7 – Marcus Rashford became the first Manchester United player to score in seven consecutive home games in all competitions since Wayne Rooney between February and April 2012. Theatre. pic.twitter.com/dJU5Z2TRCp
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) January 6, 2023
The 25-year-old deserves kudos for the mental toughness he has shown to get back to his best and arguably surpass it by reaching new levels. But much credit also goes to Erik ten Hag, whose faith and leadership seems to have had a monumental impact.
Ten Hag won the respect of the United squad early in his tenure when he ordered extra training the day after a humiliating defeat by Brentford. He made his players run most of the 14km to show his will and commitment, but also joined himself to show solidarity.
This United squad has given him more at Old Trafford than any other group of players over the last 10 years. For Rashford in particular, Ten Hag has inspired confidence, a weapon absolutely crucial to the kind of groundbreaking electric spark he can be.
Just last month, Ten Hag suggested that Rashford is currently second only to Kylian Mbappe when it comes to world-class strikers. Imagine what that belief can do for a player who is already playing well.
“I recognized great potential from the first moment. When Marcus is at the back of the defensive line, there is almost no better player in the world. There are [only] Mbappe at that moment,” said the United boss at the time.
Even discipline is solid. Rashford accidentally overslept last week and was late for a team briefing before United played Wolves. As a result of the misconduct, he was kicked out of the starting XI but came off the bench to win the game. There was no sulking and Rashford quickly put it behind him, accepting his mistake and moving on.
It indicates a well-oiled machine in which respect and trust reign. Rashford would never have regained his form without that culture, but he took it and ran with it.