He's not Solanke - Mourinho defends Rashford use


Figures from football statisticians Opta show no player now aged under 21 has played more competitive minutes for a Premier League team than Rashford (7,280) since his debut in February 2016.

"Speaking about Marcus, I think I can expect that Sunday I'm going to be highly criticised for not playing him", he said.

"I don't think there is trust from the manager to the player that he can do it on a regular basis". Chelsea midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek, another starter against Swtizerland, kept his place in the England squad despite not starting any of the Blues' opening four league games this season.

"Jose thinks the world of Marcus", he said.

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You can prove anything with statistics of course, but it seems Rashford has fared better than comparable youngsters since Jose Mourinho's arrival at Old Trafford in the summer of 2016 - and that includes United and England team-mate Lingard.

Like with so many others in the England squad, though, that confidence can only be maintained if Rashford plays for his club, no matter what he has achieved so far and the impressive comparisons he has drawn.

"But the media is very important and it is very important Manchester United supporters know the truth, that's why I'm going so specific about these numbers".

One stat highlights just how precocious Rashford is: He has scored in his senior United debut (as a late call-up for a Europa League match in February 2016), his Premier League debut, his England debut, his Champions League debut and also his first Manchester derby.

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Benitez, if you remember, chose a press conference before a Premier League game away to Stoke listed off all of the things Alex Ferguson and Man United had been getting away with. "Only if injured or suspended, he was never ever out of a selection".

When asked is he felt Rashford was a "special talent" after Tuesday's win over Switzerland, southgate replied: "Yes he is".

That came after Jamie Carragher suggested the 20-year-old should seek a move elsewhere, prompting another astonishing rebuke by Mourinho, who claimed pundits are "obsessed" with him.

"Contrary to some news, to some opinions, by the protocol point of view and according to our doctor, he will be free to play", added Mourinho.

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Carragher draws comparisons to Romelu Lukaku's time at the club and how key his time at Goodison Park was to his development after leaving Chelsea.