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Rashford's stats have improved drastically since Cristiano Ronaldo left as amazing run continues

Rashford's stats have improved drastically since Cristiano Ronaldo left as amazing run continues

Marcus Rashford has been on a goalscoring spree since the World Cup break, and some are owing it to the absence of Ronaldo.

Marcus Rashford has been in world-class form since the World Cup ended, with the English forward bagging 14 goals in all competitions since.

Many fans and journalists alike believe that this is in due part to the fact that Cristiano Ronaldo is no longer part of the team, following his controversial interview with Piers Morgan in November 2022, that resulted in his contract at the club being terminated.

The 38-year-old legend blasted the club's owners, Erik ten Hag and the mentality of the club in general in a bid to get out of the club.

It worked, as the Portuguese attacker now plies his trade for Al Nassr in Saudi Arabia on a monster contract worth £173 million per year.

Following his departure, Rashford seems to have found the best form of his career so far, even managing to equal his previous season-best goal tally (22) in just February.

Rashford scored once again against Barcelona. Image: Alamy
Rashford scored once again against Barcelona. Image: Alamy

Without Ronaldo, the Englishman has managed 15 goals in 25 games, or a goal every 123 minutes.

In contrast, Rashford had managed just 12 goals in 42 games, or a goal every 204 minutes, alongside the ex-Real Madrid forward, which of course includes last season.

Other attacking statistics have also seen a sharp increase, as Rashford registers more shots per 90 at 3.2 compared to 1.7 when Ronaldo was in the squad.

In terms of on target shots per 90, it has increased from 1.2 per 90 to 2.9, as Rashford's role has changed and evolved since Ronaldo's abrupt departure.

Rashford had a lot more defensive work to do to accommodate Ronaldo when he was in the team, tracking back a lot more and doing more pressing to make up for Ronaldo's immobility off the ball.

Rashford now has less fewer touches per 90, but more touches in the opposition penalty area, which further highlights the change in role for the 25-year-old.

Manchester United's no.10 saves his work for the final third, where he primarily operates from now, leaving more of the creative work to Bruno Fernandes or Christian Eriksen, before his injury.

This role could be seen at the Camp Nou on Thursday, where Weghorst was played deeper to accommodate Rashford's forward position, usually hanging off the last man ready to get onto balls in-behind.

He did manage to score in the 2-2 draw, a fantastically dispatched finish mast Ter-Stegen from an incredibly acute angle.

There is a big week ahead for Manchester United now, starting with a must-win game against Leicester on Sunday, followed by a second leg Europa League tie against Barcelona and finished by the Carabao Cup Final vs Newcastle.

Manchester United have a chance to get their hands on some silverware.
Manchester United have a chance to get their hands on some silverware.

Each game is a must-win, with United firstly continuing their top 4 push in the league, where they sit nicely in third place, 5 points clear of fourth.

The Europa League tie vs Barcelona will be decided at Old Trafford following the thrilling 2-2 draw, with United down as one of the leading favourites to win the trophy.

Speaking of trophies, the final on Sunday 26th February represents United's chance to get their first trophy in 6 years, going up against an up-and-coming Newcastle side that can definitely cause some problems.

Marcus Rashford has been their talisman so far this season, and he will be instrumental if United are to succeed in any of these competitions.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Manchester United, Marcus Rashford, Cristiano Ronaldo