Rashford through ‘tough period’ with Man Utd as goals restore confidence

Marcus Rashford admits to having endured a “tough period” at Manchester United, but feels a consistent run of goals for the Red Devils and England have him back on top of his game.

The 22-year-old found the target only three times through his opening 13 appearances for club and country in 2019-20 – with two of those efforts coming from the penalty spot.

Questions were asked of his value to domestic and international causes during a battle to find form, with more expected from a man who led the line for United during the injury-enforced absence of Anthony Martial.

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Rashford has, however, rediscovered his spark of late with nine goals recorded in his last 10 outings.

He is feeling confident again and looking to build on a productive week with England that saw him hit the net in Euro 2020 qualifiers against Montenegro and Kosovo.

"It has been a tough period and now I'm getting consistent games and playing week in, week out,” Rashford said of his search for a spark.

"As a forward that has huge importance.

"If you are not in the team and you're in and out, you don't quite have that confidence in front of goal. But when you're having a run in the team it's important to come up with the goods and once you start doing that it becomes second nature."

Marcus Rashford England 2019
Marcus Rashford England 2019

Rashford has helped England to book their place at another major tournament with the minimum of fuss and is excited by the attacking potential at their disposal, with the likes of Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling also in fine form.

He added: "I have been in two tournaments now and the squad is so important.

"With the qualities that every individual has in this team it is something we have to use to our advantage.

"People are going to be playing at different moments but when you are on the pitch you have to do your best, and try to come up with the goods. It is good competition."

Having breezed through qualifying, England are now in the enviable position of knowing that all three of their group games next summer will be staged on home soil.

The semi-finals and final of Euro 2020 are also due to take place at Wembley, with Rashford hoping to see the Three Lions build on recent runs to the last four of the 2018 World Cup and 2019 Nations League.

"We've dealt well with the expectation over the last 18 months," he said.

"We've not shirked from that in the qualifying matches where, in the past, there's been a tension around the performances and the style of the games.

"Securing qualification is a little bit joyless because I'm expecting us to win these games and I'm always looking at how to get better.

"For me, it's about what's next and I know we'll always be judged ultimately by the tournaments in the summer."

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