Rashford can reach Ronaldo and Rooney level – Solskjaer

The 21-year-old impressed again in his 150th appearance for Manchester United and his new boss has tipped him to become a big star

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has backed Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford to develop into a “top class” attacker like Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney.

The 21-year-old scored his 41st goal in his 150th appearance for the club as they beat Brighton 2-1 on Saturday, reaching the milestone at a younger age than United legends Ronaldo and Rooney.

The England international has been key to preserving Solskjaer’s perfect start as caretaker manager, scoring five goals in six games since the Norwegian replaced Jose Mourinho in December.

Solskjaer has been impressed by Rashford since his arrival and is convinced he can develop into one of the best in the world.

“He is only 21, but the maturity he is showing at times is more than 21 and his work rate,” Solskjaer told reporters. “If you look at the stats, I was told that he is younger than Ronaldo and Rooney to reach 150 appearances for Manchester United.”

The coach was asked if he thinks Rashford can reach the same level as the two United icons, he said: “Definitely – he can be absolutely top class.

“The more you score the more chance you have of being confident, running into the same positions.

“The way he works during the week is fantastic because he practices a lot.”

The 45-year-old has been impressed with Rashford’s attitude off the field as well and is happy to have local boys like him and Jesse Lingard at his disposal.

“He is a proper Manc,” he added. “You can’t kick him and keep him down, he will stand up for a fight and stand up for himself and a teammate.

“It is a pleasure working with him. Him and Jesse – I’ve got to say you like those proper Mancs. I worked with Jesse and saw Marcus coming through.

“They enjoy each other’s company, they socialise quite a bit. When we travel they are always together.

“On the pitch they have got an understanding; that comes from being brought through by the likes of Paul McGuiness and Jimmy Ryan. They have had the coaches and know the way we want a Manchester United player to be. They understand each other.”

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