Daniel James celebrates scoring at Old Trafford

James: Marcus is great to play with

Manchester United forward Daniel James believes his relationship with Marcus Rashford will only get better.

The Wales international has laid on three assists for Rashford in our last five Premier League games and James is relishing playing alongside the Reds' no.10.

“Yeah, Marcus is obviously a great player to play with,” the 22-year-old told us. “The abilities he has are fantastic and he’s getting better every game.

“Something we work on in training is the movement and things like that and obviously, for me, getting out wide and [in] those positions I want to find him as much as I can, to get him goals and for him to assist me as well.

“That’s something we talk about every day, to improve each other’s game.”

How Marcus scored his 50th United goalVideo

The winger found Rashford in space behind the opposition defence to score in both the draw with Liverpool at Old Trafford and the 3-1 win over Norwich at Carrow Road.

He then showed great vision to pull the ball back for the England forward to tap us into the lead at Bramall Lane, something he puts down to hard work on the training field.

“I think in those situations, over time you get better obviously because you do it in training. That’s something we do in training all the time.

“Obviously it’s going to be different balls and you’re going to be in different areas but [last Sunday] for me, the right ball was to pull it back.

“I saw him in the corner of my eye and I think if I went for goal it wouldn’t have been a goal. I think over time I’m learning every game to be in those situations and get those assists.”

The Reds take on Aston Villa this Sunday at Old Trafford, and James is expecting a challenge against a side buoyant from Monday’s night Premier League victory over Newcastle United at Villa Park.

“I think this season they’ve really surprised people,” added the Hull-born winger.

“I played against them last season [in the Championship and FA Cup]. They’re a very good team and they’ve still got a lot of the players they did last season, but obviously they’ve added a lot of good players as well.

“They’ve come from a good win on Monday night and we’re preparing hard for it. They’ve got great qualities and that’s something we’re going to look at and we’ll try and get a stamp on it.”

Rashford scores against Aston Villa
Rashford netted the winner the last time Villa came to Old Trafford, in April 2016.

The Villans’ captain Jack Grealish took home the majority of the plaudits after Dean Smith’s side recorded their first win in four league games, and James sees the playmaker as someone for United to look out for at the weekend.

“As you’ve seen in the week, [he] got a lot of praise. I think he’s a great player. The things he did last season were very good.

“Obviously, he’s taken it into the Premier League and I’m sure people think he can do it at the top level.”

Jack Grealish
Villa captain Grealish is someone James rates highly.

The match against Villa is the first of nine that United will play in a typically busy December, with a visit to Arsenal and an FA Cup third round tie also scheduled in for the first week of January.

James believes three points are vital against the West Midlanders, especially with tough tests against Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City coming up over the next week.

“Yeah, it’s very important. I think December and after Christmas, it really opens out.

“This is our chance to go on a good run and keep doing the things right that we’ve been doing.”

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