Marcus Rashford put in a truly mesmerising performance during Manchester United’s 4-0 win over Reading in the FA Cup third round on Saturday.
The youngster, starting at No.9 for just the third time this season, dazzled supporters with a performance heralded by raw energy and power going forward, refusing to give Reading’s back four a moment’s peace.
He rounded off an excellent afternoon in style with two goals in quick succession, taking his tally for this season to six goals in all competitions.
His numbers from the game shed light on what was a truly excellent striker’s performance.
Rashford's game by numbers vs. Reading:
33% chance conversion
— Statman Dave (@StatmanDave) January 7, 2017
Now, don’t get me wrong: United with Zlatan Ibrahimovic at No.9 are a real threat – a slow-burning kind of dangerous, you might say, with Mourinho’s men incessantly banging on the door until the Swede eventually prevails.
With Rashford at No.9, however, Jose Mourinho‘s men look like the United of yesteryear: direct, ruthless, devastatingly fast, always surging forward. The youngster’s constant movement all across the back four asked serious questions of Reading’s defensive shape, opening up plenty of gaps for the likes of Wayne Rooney, Anthony Martial and Juan Mata to exploit.
By the end Rashford’s sheer aggression paid dividends, with Reading quickly collapsing as the teenager netted two late goals.