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Arsenal legend says Man Utd star looked a "shadow" of himself when playing with Cristiano Ronaldo

Chris Byfield

| Last updated 

Arsenal legend says Man Utd star looked a "shadow" of himself when playing with Cristiano Ronaldo

Arsenal legend Emmanuel Petit claimed Marcus Rashford looked like a "shadow" of himself when playing alongside Cristiano Ronaldo.

Ronaldo had his contract terminated at United on the eve of the World Cup in November, after giving an interview in which he was scathing of the club, its manager Erik ten Hag, and its owners the Glazers.

However, simultaneous to Ronaldo's United departure has been Rashford's incredible upturn in form.

The England star has scored eight goals in his last seven United games, including a winner in the Manchester Derby on Saturday.


Indeed, upon tapping in Alejandro Garnacho’s cross Rashford became the first United player to score in seven successive United matches since Ronaldo.

Rashford was a “shadow” of himself with Ronaldo

Petit insisted that Ronaldo’s departure has helped Rashford express himself.

Rashford has claimed 16 goals and provided 6 assists this season, having recorded just five goals and two assists last term, when Ronaldo first arrived.



The former France international told ICE 36: “Ten Hag is taking the first steps to rebuilding Manchester United and the players have responded well.

“The best example of this is Rashford. For the last two seasons, he has performed like a shadow of himself, but since Ronaldo left the club, he can't stop scoring.

“Do you think that is a coincidence? I don’t think so.


“This is not the same United team anymore. In the space of three or four months, Ten Hag has completely transformed United."

Petit added that Ten Hag’s firm handling of the Ronaldo situation helped him exert his authority in the dressing room.

He said: “It wasn’t easy for him to begin with, but he has made strong decisions and has put some discipline back into the United dressing room, which is exactly what the club lacked.

“You can see that, now, he has the support of the players. He sent a strong signal to the squad when he put Ronaldo on the bench and when he put Harry Maguire, his captain, on the bench.


“He gave United exactly what they needed in terms of discipline. They lost their identity and their character for so many years - they were a shadow of the great club that Manchester United has been historically."

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Football, Manchester United, Erik Ten Hag, Marcus Rashford, Cristiano Ronaldo, Arsenal

Chris Byfield
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