Young: Rashford just wants to keep learning
Manchester United's captain for Saturday's win over Brighton & Hove Albion, Ashley Young, has pinpointed the key to Marcus Rashford's current exciting run of success.
Rashford's staggering strike against the Seagulls at the Stretford End was his fifth goal in seven matches and brought his United total to 41, a tally that was boosted early on by a double at the expense of Arsenal - the Reds' next opponents, in the Emirates FA Cup, this coming Friday night.
"Marcus just wants to learn," Young told reporters after Saturday's game.
"He's on the training pitch all the time and at times you have to drag him off, because he just wants to be out there.
“He wants to learn and that is a good thing to see in a youngster now. It's fantastic to see, he's got that hunger, that desire, he's a winner, and when you come through the Academy here, you've got that in abundance and you can see that when he goes out on the pitch every day here."
Rashford announced himself in the big time three years ago, with those two goals in United's 3-2 victory over Arsenal in the Premier League. Then a teenager, he’d been plunged late into Europa League action three days earlier against Midtjylland when Anthony Martial was injured in the-warm up.
The young striker quickly set Old Trafford alight with a debut double as the Reds beat the Danes 5-1. But it was the brace against the Gunners in the Category A showdown that really caught the eye and promised much.
“I saw it from his youth-team days, when he was in the reserves and then obviously when he was training with us," recalled Young.
"He was a breath of fresh air. I was looking at him, thinking 'I wish I was that spring chicken again' but that seems like ages ago when he burst on to the scene, and I don't think he's looked back since. Like I said, he wants to work each day and every day and he can only get better.
“I've said it from the time he broke into the team and even before then, he can be an unbelievable talent, he's got the world ahead of him.
“He looks like he's been playing for years and years. He's a man ahead of his age.
“The finish was unbelievable. I think he was actually off-balance but the way he finished it was superb and it's a sight for us back players to see, the forwards running at defenders like that. I wouldn't want to see him running at me like that! We get that in training.
“It's a tough job there [up front], but as long as they keep scoring, there's great competition for places, and that's what you've got to do – you've got to earn your money and go out there and produce, and he's been doing that.”
Rashford has ignited again this season following Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s arrival as caretaker boss last month. Five goals in seven appearances under the new regime has helped fire the Reds.
“He [Solskjaer] is not a bad person to learn off, is he? With the career he had. What a player he was,” said Ashley admiringly.
“I think Marcus is learning each day and obviously the manager will guide him in the way he does.
“He's on a great scoring run right now and I hope it continues for him. Us players at the back have got to feed the forward players and I think the goals come from all around the pitch, and it's not just him. Jesse Lingard's there, Anthony's there, Romelu [Lukaku], Alexis, just to name a few. So there's great competition for places and everyone's got to be on their game every day in training.”
Young believes United’s famous conveyor belt of youth talent will continue to flow with another crop of kids ready to follow in Rashford’s footsteps.
“There's that many. Chongy (Tahith Chong) has been with us, Jimmy Garner has been with us, Mason's (Greenwood) been with us, Angel's (Gomez) been with us, just to name a few.
"They've been given an opportunity, obviously they travelled with us when we went away [to Dubai], and they are incredible talents.
"I'm sure if they keep their feet on the ground and keep working hard, they can do well," he said.
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