Jose Mourinho dismisses concerns over Marcus Rashford's development

4 March 2018, 22:56

Jose Mourinho has played down concerns over Marcus Rashford’s lack of game-time at Manchester United as the World Cup approaches.

Rashford has not started a league match for United, who face Crystal Palace on MNF, live on Sky Sports Premier League, since Boxing Day and has found his first-team opportunities limited following the arrival of Alexis Sanchez.

However, Mourinho insists Rashford remains firmly part of his plans at Old Trafford and he expects the 20-year-old to be part of Gareth Southgate's squad in Russia.

"No, I don't reassure anyone," Mourinho said. "The main reassurance for him is that he is always selected.

"There is not one single match when Marcus is not selected to start or to be on the bench. When I see you sometimes put in doubt if he is going to be selected for the World Cup or not be selected.

"You know, if the national coach trusts him, he selects him. It doesn't matter if he plays or doesn't play.

"There are many examples of players who don't play for their clubs at all and they go to the national teams.

"You have the example of (Sergio) Romero, who is the second goalkeeper at Manchester United and the first goalkeeper for such an amazing football country like Argentina.

"In your own country, you have examples of players who play even without scoring a goal in the Premier League.

"So, it's up to Gareth Southgate. If he trusts him, he selects him. It doesn't matter if he plays or if he doesn't play for Manchester United."

Rashford burst onto the scene with a series of crucial goals during the 2015-16 season under Louis van Gaal, and the England international cemented his place in the United first-team with a solid campaign last season in which he scored 11 goals for the club.

However, the forward has started just two games for United since the turn of the year, leading to concerns over his development under Mourinho.

"At his age, what he's doing is more than enough and the experience he's getting at every level is more than enough for us to be happy with what we think is going to be his future," Mourinho said. "It's as simple as that.

"But because he had such an impact at the beginning, probably people expect him to play even more than he does and score even more than he does and perform even more than what he does but it is not so simple.

"What I see makes me really happy, to see the same boy. When you ask me about (Scott) McTominay, I spoke about McTominay as a boy before he was a player and Marcus is the same.

"What will keep them in the right direction, what will make them have that stability to improve is what they are as boys. And Marcus is a fantastic boy,b also very grounded.

"For sure, we love him, and we believe in him, and he's going to have the chances."