Man Utd news: Bad apple Rashford slammed by Souness

Martin Macdonald
Marcus Rashford Manchester United

Marcus Rashford is a “bad apple” who is undermining his manager Erik ten Hag and his Manchester United team mates, according to Graeme Souness.

Rashford, 26, was reprimanded for missing training last week following two nights out in Belfast. The United forward was subsequently axed from the squad which travelled to Newport for the FA Cup fourth round.

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He made a goalscoring return to the team for the thrilling 4-3 Premier League victory over Wolves on Thursday night but Souness believes the England man still has a long way to go before he makes amends.

“Rashford wouldn’t have got away with this behaviour at that club in the past because the senior players would have pointed out to him that it’s not the way to act,” the former Liverpool star wrote in his Mail Pluscolumn. “Fergie would certainly not have tolerated it, either.

Rashford is embarrassing himself

“It shouldn’t even be the senior players having to tell him the home truths. His brothers are his agents. These are the guys who should be stopping him doing the idiotic things and telling him that he’s making a fool of himself. Embarrassing himself.”

United have struggled in front of goal in the Premier League this season and Rashford has not been immune from those issues. He has only netted five in the league this term, a long way down from last season’s total when he netted 30 in all competitions.

“While he continues to act like a 19-year-old who’s got too much money in his pocket, the jury is still out on him as a player,” Souness blasted.

“I pose this question: Are we seriously saying he is a ‘top player’ when he has had only one very good season after bursting onto the scene as an 18-year-old in 2016? I would strongly suggest not.”

Rashford put himself in the spotlight with his private jet trip to Belfast last week, with reports of the player downing tequila and subsequently flying back to Manchester late. His behaviour, Souness believes, has put Ten Hag in a bind.

Manchester United at this time need the best version of Rashford, whereas they are getting the worst – someone who is misbehaving off the field and has scored only five goals in this Premier League season,” he said.

“Ten Hag is not in a position to sell Rashford, with his own position under scrutiny and United’s squad a shadow of those in Fergie’s time in charge. Rashford is putting Ten Hag under all sorts of pressure.

“It might sound a bit harsh to say it but he is the bad apple – undermining the management and the team. He will have pals in that dressing room, but even they will be looking at him and asking, ‘do we want someone like that with us?’”

There have been renewed links to Paris Saint-Germain with the Ligue 1 leaders reportedly keen on the 26-year-old in previous transfer windows. But Souness believes it is not too late for Rashford to go on and have a successful career at Old Trafford.

“This is a classic case of a young man getting too much too soon and thinking he’s a bigger and better player than he is,” said Souness.

“Because if Rashford’s career ended this weekend, he would be remembered as a nearly-man. It’s certainly still not too late for him, though. He still has the potential and time to be a fabulous player.”

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