Marcus Rashford has put his finger on what is different about life at Manchester United since Erik ten Hag’s arrival at Old Trafford and has highlighted the current buzz around the squad.
Ten Hag succeeded caretaker boss Ralf Rangnick in May but took charge of his first training session at the club’s Carrington training ground last Monday with the United players not on international duty the first members of the squad to report back for pre-season training following the summer break.
Of those to return first was forward Marcus Rashford following his continued omission from Gareth Southgate’s England squad and he has now had a full week of training under the Dutchman.
Speaking about his first training sessions under Ten Hag, the 24-year-old admits there are plenty of positives already ahead of the new season, as well as admitting that he needed the pre-season break in order to get ready for the upcoming campaign.
“We have got that feeling of excitement and that buzz around the training ground again and so it is definitely positive going into pre-season,” Rashford told United’s club website.
“I feel like I probably needed that time to switch off a little bit and me having that time enabled me to refocus a lot earlier than I expected to be honest.
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“I feel ready and focused so when that first game does come it’s good to know you have done almost six weeks of training beforehand. It will definitely be a positive.”
This summer will be big for Rashford as he looks to win back his place as a regular starter in United’s squad. Last season, Rashford played 32 times in all competitions but made only 13 Premier League starts after missing the opening months of last season with a shoulder injury.
Last season was comfortably the forward’s worst campaign for goals since his breakthrough 2015/16 campaign, netting only five goals in all competitions, one of which came in the Champions League.
With Cristiano Ronaldo potentially leaving Old Trafford this summer, Rashford’s chances of game time up front under Ten Hag could be bolstered, although United are believed to be in the market for a new versatile forward that can play across the front three.
After completing the planned signings of Dutch international duo Frenkie de Jong and Tyrell Malacia from Barcelona and Feyenoord respectively, next on the club’s list is a new attacker. Ajax’s Antony and Palmeiras’ Gabriel Veron are both on the club’s watchlist.
United have also launched a bid to sign centre-back Lisandro Martinez from Ajax, having spent the last three seasons playing under Ten Hag in the Johan Cruijff Arena.