Jose Mourinho has heaped praise on Marcus Rashford following Manchester United’s 2-0 win over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, noting that the teenager played “fantastically well”.
Rashford handed the home side a perfect start against the league leaders, latching onto an inch-perfect ball from Ander Herrera to stroke past Asmir Begovic with seven minutes gone.
But he wasn’t done there: the 19-year-old harassed Gary Cahill and David Luiz all afternoon with an endless stream of superb runs in behind.
And Mourinho, speaking after the game, was quick to heap praise on the youngster for what was a devastating display against Antonio Conte’s men.
“Today he scored and it gave the team more confidence, more stability.”
It has been largely accepted this season that Zlatan Ibrahimovic is Man United’s main-man up front, whilst Rashford – a prodigy as opposed to the finish article – serves as a potent back-up option.
But his performance against Chelsea emphatically demonstrated that, actually, he can be much more than a favourable second choice to the dominant 35-year-old. Zlatan may offer a guarantee of goals, superb composure and a warrior-like attitude, but lacks something that Rashford has in abundance: raw, frightening pace that stretches defenders all game.
Mourinho perhaps ought to consider a way in which he can accommodate both forces as the season’s climax approaches.