The youngster, after receiving a rest during last weekend’s 2-0 win over Burnley, was restored to the No.9 role against Pep Guardiola’s side.
And he made a superb start, causing numerous problems for Nicolas Otamendi and Aleksandar Kolarov during the opening stages with his raw energy going forward.
Mourinho, speaking after the game, was full of praise for the way Rashford applied himself at the Ethiad.
“We had two good chances to score, Marcus gave lots of problems to their defenders, they stopped him sometimes with lots of fouls, so for me the spirit was amazing and the first-half was really good,” he said.
I will leap at any excuse to show you, the reader, this incredible piece of skill from Rashford on Otamendi.
— ARYAN (@unitedaryan) April 27, 2017
This is poetry in motion. I could watch this for hours. The way he nonchalantly sends the Argentine for his tea should be illegal.
But it is worth noting that Rashford, in contrast with his silky demolition of Otamendi as shown above, endured a brutal physical contest with Man City’s defensive frontier. Any burst forward was greeted by a hoard of blue shirts that brought him down unfairly on numerous occasions, only for Martin Atkinson – clearly determined to let the game flow – to do nothing in response.
The youngster kept fighting, however, and while he may have left the Ethiad without a goal, he can take pride from what was a courageous display at No.9.