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Marcus Rashford’s ‘party’ lifestyle ‘worried Man Utd staff as long ago as 2021’ – as Rooney reaches out to ex-team-mate

MANCHESTER United staff had worries about Marcus Rashford’s “party lifestyle” as long ago as autumn 2021, insiders claim.

Concerns were raised about the star enjoying boozy nights out and holding rowdy house parties with pals.

Wayne Rooney decided to get in touch with Marcus Rashford amid worries about his 'party lifestyle'

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Wayne Rooney decided to get in touch with Marcus Rashford amid worries about his ‘party lifestyle’Credit: Getty
Old Trafford bosses became concerned about worrying allegations regarding Rashford’s behaviour

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Old Trafford bosses became concerned about worrying allegations regarding Rashford’s behaviourCredit: Getty

Wayne Rooney, who had himself hit troubled patches in his career, decided to get in touch with his former team-mate.

The Sun understands that Reds ­legends David Beckham and Rio Ferdinand have also been in contact.

Their interventions came after Old Trafford bosses became concerned about a series of worrying allegations about England international Rashford’s behaviour.

And The Sun told how Rashford went on a 12-hour bender in Belfast last week then rang in sick for training on Friday.

READ MORE ON MARCUS RASHFORD

He was dropped for Sunday’s 4-2 FA Cup win over Newport and will be fined two weeks of his £325,000 weekly wage.

He expressed remorse for his actions during a tense meeting with manager Erik ten Hag and United’s director of football John Murtough on Monday.

The club said the matter was now closed and he would be considered for selection for the game against Wolves tomorrow.

But earlier alarm bells included Rashford’s relationship with the fans — usually rock solid given his status as an academy graduate.

They suffered when he clashed with a supporter at Old Trafford who criticised his performance against Atletico Madrid in the Champions League.

He was alleged to have confronted the fan saying “Who the f**k do you think you are you silly c**t, come round the back and say it to my face”. He later denied it.

Rooney, who like Rashford burst into the public eye as a teenager, was only too happy to help.

A source said: “The club were alerted to some issues which ­concerned them. People around Marcus believed one solution could be to ask Wayne if he would be good enough to contact Marcus directly and offer support.

“Wayne was only to happy to help. Marcus has always looked up to Wayne — he’s one of his idols — so he was really happy to hear from him.”

Reds legends David Beckham and Rio Ferdinand have also been in contact with Rashford

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Reds legends David Beckham and Rio Ferdinand have also been in contact with RashfordCredit: Getty
Marcus Rashford's turbulent relationship with childhood sweetheart Lucia Loi broke down

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Marcus Rashford’s turbulent relationship with childhood sweetheart Lucia Loi broke downCredit: Getty

Rooney, who by that time had retired and was manager of Derby County, contacted Rashford by phone.

He gave him words of encouragement and made clear he was available if Rashford ever needed to seek his advice.

Rashford said in a 2023 interview with Gary Neville how grateful he was for Rooney’s support.

He said: “I always think to myself like how can I help other players like ­certain players have helped me.

“I feel like I’m in the right position and stuff to genuinely help them in the beginning of their careers. I’m trying to set them off in the right direction the same way that people like Wazza [Rooney], Carrars [Michael Carrick], Juan [Juan Mata] all set me off in the right direction.”

But despite the support offered to Rashford, some have remained concerned that his love of nightlife has been adversely affecting his performance on the pitch.

The 26-year-old has been spotted going into casinos, including Manchester’s 235 casino and Genting in the city’s Chinatown district.

Rashford is understood to have started playing poker at home with some of his United team-mates and is said to have then begun to visit casinos to play in private VIP rooms, knocking back beers.

Customers at one casino gathered by the door to try to see him. A source said: “Marcus loves playing poker and has been doing it for years. He might have a couple of bottles of beer — nothing crazy, but he didn’t used to so it wasn’t great.

“When Marcus was challenged about it, he would always push back and say it wasn’t an issue.”

Another source said: “Marcus loves the nightlife but the concern is that he’s been doing just too much of it. His house has been a party house.”

More upset came when his turbulent relationship with childhood sweetheart Lucia Loi, 25, broke down.

The couple met while pupils at Ashton-on-Mersey school while Rashford was a United scholar.

A source said: “Lucia is great for Marcus because she’s a normal girl and knew him before all the money, the cars and the jewellery.

“When you strip back his personality he isn’t the most confident around women and has the same insecurities most people have.”

Marcus, right, with brothers Dane Rashford, left, and Dwaine Maynard, centre

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Marcus, right, with brothers Dane Rashford, left, and Dwaine Maynard, centreCredit: Instagram
Rashford is so close to brothers Dwaine and Dane that they all live in mansions in the same road along with mum Melanie

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Rashford is so close to brothers Dwaine and Dane that they all live in mansions in the same road along with mum MelanieCredit: PA

Another issue which has weighed heavily on Rashford recently is supporting his extended family.

He is so close to brothers Dwaine and Dane that they all live in mansions in the same road along with mum Melanie.

But those relationships have been put to the test following Dane’s arrest on suspicion of battery in October while on holiday in Miami with his partner.

The police case was dropped but the fallout has seen Dwaine put his home up for sale and caused friction within the family.

A source said: “Marcus loves all of his family dearly but it is draining for him.”

Rashford has also bought properties for extended family members but that has added to his stress levels, as some have expected him to provide further for them.

The source added: “Marcus is really struggling. Anyone who cares for him needs to step up and start helping him, rather than expecting it to be the other way round.

“He might be a wealthy footballer but he’s a young man who has lost his way. The sooner he finds it, the better.”

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