Marcus Rashford in training for Man United during Tour 2023 in the United States

How Rashford plans to be even better

Friday 04 August 2023 07:00

Marcus Rashford has pinpointed two areas of his game he wants to improve in the forthcoming season, as he emphasised the importance of working on both strengths and weaknesses.

In 2022/23, our no.10 netted a season-best tally of 30 goals and became the first club-produced footballer to win the Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year award since Ryan Giggs in 1998.

Fresh from signing a new long-term contract at Old Trafford recently, Marcus will be hoping to build on last season’s efforts, both from a personal and collective perspective, when Erik ten Hag’s men return to competitive action.

Speaking in the latest episode of The Overlap, Marcus was asked by former United captain Gary Neville which elements he would like to add to his game to make him a better player.

“I think it's always important to work on your strengths,” the England international said.

“I never stopped working on my strengths and you want to get your weaknesses as good as they can get, but, you know, your weaknesses are more often than not always going to be a little bit behind your strengths. So mine's left foot and heading, I always want to work on them.”

Nine of Rashy’s 123 goals for United to date have come with his head - four of which were scored last season.

Gary acknowledged Marcus’s heading is getting better, but the forward himself believes he should be scoring more via this method.

“I feel like if I'm in the position in the right areas in the box, then I should be getting, you know, seven to ten [goals from] headers a season. So I still feel like I can do that and I'll be pushing to do that next season.”

As we all know, Marcus is very effective in the left channel in taking on defenders and creating space, as well as creating goal scoring opportunities for his team-mates.

When it comes to finishing with his left foot, Marcus admits this can be affected by a lack of confidence in terms of his overall game, but taking information from his striker coach on board is helping with his positioning and awareness.

“For me, my left foot is just about confidence, you know, like I feel like when I'm confident I score with it,” he explained. “When I'm not confident, it just never goes right with my left foot.

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“But if I'm feeling confident and I'm feeling, you know, strong and fit and healthy, I feel like if I get an opportunity on my left, I've got a good chance of scoring as long as, like I said, as long as I'm in the right areas.

“So a lot of it is about just getting into the right areas because my striker coach, he was a forward, so he always gives me information on getting across the front post or on the shoulder of defenders and stuff like that.

“But it's good for me to know that because even when I'm wide, it helps me understand what my forward would be thinking and where I need to deliver the ball or try and, you know, get assists from that aspect. And if I am making the box, I know where I need to be.”

A busy schedule during the season can sometimes mean the main focus is on training, matches and recovery, but Rashy always finds time to analyse his performances and stresses the importance of reflecting on how a game has gone.

“I think when you've got three games a week, I analyse it but maybe not as much - probably the day after a game, if I've got a week between, I'll recover the day after a game and then do it on the Monday.

“But I think it's important because a lot of my game is just being in the right positions at the right time. I think sometimes wingers neglect it now, but for me it's because I can always see the forward.”