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Man Utd’s Rashford replacements as Ten Hag relationship ‘beyond repair’

Robin Bairner
Marcus Rashford, Erik ten Hag, Man Utd, 2023/24
© IMAGO

Marcus Rashford and Erik ten Hag find their relationship at breaking point, according to a report.

The Sun reports that the pair are barely speaking to each other following Rashford’s excursion to a Belfast nightclub in January that led to him missing training and sitting out an FA Cup encounter against Newport County.

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It was not the first time that the striker and Ten Hag have clashed this season, with the Dutchman struggling to put the latest incident behind him.

The Sun states: “Staff are now concerned that the relationship between manager and player has broken down irrevocably as Rashford continues to struggle to find the form that lead him to career-best figures of 30 goals last season.”

After a frustrating campaign, the England international could be allowed to leave in the summer, with PSG linked with a potential transfer for him as they seek to replace Kylian Mbappe.

This would leave a void at Man Utd, offering Jim Ratcliffe and his new backroom team the opportunity to show off their recruitment talents.

But who is best placed to replace Rashford at Old Trafford?

Marcus Rashford and Erik ten Hag
© IMAGO – Marcus Rashford and Erik ten Hag

Three Rashford alternatives for Man Utd

For an instant impact, Bayern Munich’s Kingsley Coman is the best choice, according to data analytics specialists SciSports.

Coman, 27, has the best current skill level of left wingers who have a similar style to Rashford. With an Estimated Transfer Value (ETV) of €42 million, he would also offer reasonable value.

In terms of a player who could have a longer-term impact at Man Utd, SciSports suggest AC Milan’s Rafael Leao is worth considering.

Aside from Manchester City’s Jeremy Doku, who is untouchable for the Red Devils, Leao has the highest potential ceiling of left wingers. Aged 24, he could play the best part of a decade at the Theatre of Dreams if things work out.

Man Utd’s Rashford replacement options

Name Age SciSkill Potential ETV
Marcus Rashford 26 109.3 110.7 €75.8m
Kingsley Coman 27 121.0 123.8 €41.8m
Rafael Leao 24 113.3 123.9 €67.3m
Nico Williams 21 100.8 122.3 €27.6m

Leao, though, would come at a cost. He is likely to leave Milan this summer but might require an investment of €100m or more to secure him. His ETC is €67m, so there is an element of risk here.

A more conservative option is Athletic Club’s Nico Williams, who has a high ceiling but may take a little more cultivating as his present level is lower than Leao and Coman, SciSports reports. It is not dramatically short of where Rashford is currently, though.

With a release clause of €50m in his contract, Man Utd know what they would need to pay, and that price point could be attractive given the volume of deals all over the field that need to be made.

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