Alan Shearer has been in contact with struggling Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford, while Paul Ince says Ralf Rangnick must be careful with his next step for the England man.
Shearer watched form the BBC studio on Monday night as Rashford toiled through another 90 minutes for the Reds. It was another display from the 24-year-old which has been the story of his season so far – underwhelming. The forward has struggled to get into top gear after missing the first two months of the season after shoulder surgery.
Once again he looked a shadow of his former self as he failed to execute what looked like a straight forward pass to Mason Greenwood in space in the box in the first half. Instead he opted to shoot.
While a second-half incident which saw him give up on a loose ball in the penalty area prompted groans from sections of the Old Trafford faithful.
Shearer said Rashford’s recent performances looked like “a chore” in the recent win over Villa.
“It’s a little bit better, I think, in that first half,” Shearer said. “I get that he’s had injuries, I get that he’s struggling with a little bit of confidence, amazing work off the pitch.
“But certainly a lot of the times this season, it looks as if everything is a chore. It looks like hard work for him. He doesn’t seem to be enjoying his football as much.”
And the former England striker has since been in touch with Rashford to offer his support.
He is without a goal in 11 games and has been subbed in eight of his 10 starts.
According to The Sun, Shearer offered “offered him tips on handling the pressure and expectation”. He also convinced him that he can turn the corner on this sticky part of his career.
Meanwhile, former Manchester United star Paul Ince has also phoned Rashford to offer his support.
And the former England midfielder believes Rashford has been pushed into different positions to accommodate others at Old Trafford.
Ince believes that has had a negative effect on his game and he has offered Ralf Rangnick some advice on how to deal with the misfiring forward.
‘I wouldn’t drop Rashford for Saturday’
Ince said: “When you look at Rashford, he doesn’t look happy. I’m thinking: ‘Why is he not happy?’
“I wouldn’t drop Rashford for Saturday. If that was me, I’d say: ‘Marcus, where do you want to play? Number 10? Left-hand side? Are you not getting enough of the ball? Are you not making the right decisions when you get it? How do you feel?’
“But to drop him could impact him more than playing him.”
Rashford has impressed in training, according to Rangnick, but the interim-boss is baffled why he has not been able to transfer that form into games.
“Actually I don’t know,” said Rangnick after the win over Villa.
“He’s trying hard, he’s in training, he was doing really well in the last couple of days, that’s why he was quite rightly in the starting XI.”