Marcus Rashford reportedly partied on Thursday night before informing Manchester United that he was too sick to train on Friday, despite the Red Devils initially denying it. United insisted that Rashford had only partied on Wednesday night, hours before a sanctioned day off.
Rashford had informed United that he would be in Northern Ireland with former team-mate Ro-Shaun Williams, who spent last week sealing a move to Larne. Williams, 25, spent 11 years on the United books and is claimed to be a close friend of Rashford’s.
On Friday, footage circulated on social media of Rashford partying in a Belfast nightclub. United claimed that the clips were taken from Wednesday night and that players had been given Thursday off, with the club preparing to travel to Newport for their FA Cup tie on Sunday.
Head coach Erik ten Hag said on Friday: “This morning, Rashford was ill and (Jonny) Evans was ill so we have to see how they recover.”
However, The Athletic report that Rashford was seen celebrating on both nights. Sources reportedly claim that the 26-year-old attended the Thompsons nightclub on Thursday night.
United’s first-team squad were given a week off after their 2-2 draw with Tottenham on January 14. They returned on Monday, with Rashford taking part in two sessions before his trip to Northern Ireland on Wednesday.
Rashford was pictured at Larne’s training facilities on Thursday. His friend Williams completed a move from Doncaster Rovers, for whom he had played over 60 times.
In November, Ten Hag reprimanded Rashford for attending a nightclub after United were beaten 3-0 in the Manchester Derby at Old Trafford. The Dutchman said the episode was ‘unacceptable’ and revealed that last season’s top scorer had apologised.
“I spoke with him about it. It’s unacceptable. He apologised and that is it. For us it’s an internal matter,” Ten Hag said at the time.
“He’s very motivated to put things right. He’s totally with us. He has made a mistake but that doesn’t say he’s not fitting in. I see him every day in training, what he’s doing, I know.”
Rashford has struggled for form this season, failing to build on a 2022-23 campaign in which he scored a career-best 30 goals. He has bagged a meagre four goals in 26 appearances this term, and scored his first Old Trafford goal in seven months against Spurs.