Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford has vowed to play again this season after recently picking up a serious back injury.
The 22-year-old England international had been enjoying a prolific campaign for the Red Devils before it became known he could be out for up to three months with a double stress fracture in his back.
How big a blow is Rashford’s absence for Man Utd? Five key things to know…
- Marcus Rashford is Man Utd’s leading Premier League goalscorer this season.
- He’s responsible for 38.9% of their overall goals (14/36) so far.
- Rashford was ever-present under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer before sustaining a serious back injury.
- He’s expected to be ruled out for 2-3 months, which means he’ll miss the resumption of their Europa League campaign.
- Rashford, however, has vowed to return before the season ends and help Man Utd secure a top-four berth.
Rashford also has a piece of floating bone in his ankle that will require surgery to remove. The news couldn’t have come at a worse time for Man Utd who are battling for a top four place this season.
In what’s been another topsy turvy campaign for the record 20-time English champions, their homegrown star has been a shining light having bagged 19 goals across 31 matches in all competitions.
He’s their leading Premier League scorer on 14 goals, with only Sergio Aguero (16) and Jamie Vardy (17) currently ahead of him, the next best for Man Utd is Anthony Martial (eight). His absence will undoubtedly place even more pressure on their other attacking players.
Much-maligned boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could hand teenager Mason Greenwood increased playing time with the same going for Juan Mata who signed a contract extension before the season began.
Rashford, though, isn’t thinking about 2020/21 but rather backing himself to add to his best-ever tally across a single campaign.
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“Thanks guys, I’ll be back before the season ends to hopefully help my team claim top four,” he wrote on his official Twitter account in response to a get well soon message from the Premier League.
United’s latest homegrown star
Before visiting the physio room Rashford notched up 200 appearances for Man Utd’s first team. It was a moment that meant so much for the academy graduate who couldn’t believe he followed in the footsteps of club legends George Best and Ryan Giggs.
Since an injury crisis involving United’s forward options under Louis van Gaal in the spring of 2016 allowed Rashford to make his debut he’s not looked back, though it hasn’t come without many questions whether he’s been fulfilling his potential.
Beyond proud to become the 3rd youngest player to hit 200 @ManUtd games 🔴⚪️
Can’t put into words what it means to follow Giggsy and George Best. Two goals and three points completes a perfect day 👊🏿 pic.twitter.com/X4g72EMH0S
— Marcus Rashford (@MarcusRashford) January 11, 2020
Unlike the aforementioned names, Rashford is hardly playing for a successful Man Utd team, he’s nonetheless produced 64 goals across 200 matches whilst creating a further 26 for his teammates. This season has been Rashford’s most prolific, until now he’d never reached 15 goals in a single season, and with the Englishman currently on 19 goals in all competitions he’ll be hoping to break the 20-goal barrier.