The first season of a promising career regularly looks easier to navigate than the second, when a player’s individual skills are better known and can be nullified by opponents.
And that looked very much the case in the young career of Manchester United sensation Marcus Rashford.
He seemed to find crucial pockets of space with such ease and regularity in his breakthrough season at Manchester United that his future at the top of the game seemed assured.
But a barren spell in front of goal under new manager Jose Mourinho made the first half of his second season in the team much less straightforward.
But even when he wasn’t scoring goals, Jose Mourinho appreciated Rashford’s workrate, his ability to stretch defences and to carry the ball up the park at pace.
And the cruel cruciate ligament injury to top scorer Zlatan – which, in all likelihood has robbed him of the chance of playing a European final in his home country at the end of the a remarkable career – offered Rashford the chance to take centre stage once more.
It’s an opportunity that top players grab with both hands and that has certainly been the case with this young sensation.
Rashford changes the dynamic of the Manchester United team by offering a frighteningly pacy outlet. Unlike Zlatan, Rashford can pick up the ball and take on defenders himself rather than necessary trying to pass around them.
He can turn defence into attack in the blink of an eye and this seems like the way forward for Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United.
So TFF believes that he is the perfect weapon to unleash on a Celta side who won’t go all guns ablazing but do have to try to come at Manchester United and score more than one goal to progress – be that in normal time or on penalties.
And that should give Manchester United space to exploit behind a defence which looks less than top class.
The first leg of this tie looked quite literally like men against boys and Manchester United looked bigger and more powerful than their opponents. The one thing lacking was goals plural.
With Rashford in the side TFF believes that Manchester United will win this game convincingly.