Manchester United overcame a difficult test against Real Betis this evening, with their talismanic forward Marcus Rashford excellent once again.
As the in-form attacker in European football right now, the England star was back to his best as he opened the scoring en route to a first leg win to take control of the tie.
Rashford’s composure in the box was delightful as he took control of a rebounded Bruno Fernandes cross with ease.
The subsequent shimmy onto his right foot sat down two Betis defenders, with his thunderous strike rippling the roof of the net.
Erik ten Hag will be delighted to have seen all four members of his attacking quartet get on the scoresheet, but the continued excellence of United’s No. 10 gives the manager a source of goals he knows he can rely on.
He brought his shooting boots along as he threatened the goal three times on the night with a 100% accuracy, but there was far more to his game than that.
United were excellent in deploying the high press to unsettle Betis, with Rashford diligent in cutting passing lanes and applying pressure.
He won three duels and completed a tackle high up the pitch that led to a fine chance for Wout Weghorst.
All in all, Rashford won possession for his team six times, providing a platform for the success of United’s gameplan to unsettle the Betis backline in possession.
Rashford also completed a cross for a high-value chance on goal for the towering Dutch centre forward.
Able to create as well as threaten the net himself, Rashford played ten final third passes successfully.
Marcus Rashford's game by numbers vs. Real Betis:
100% shot accuracy
10 final third passes
6 touches in opp. box
6x possession won
3 duels won
3 shots on target
Given a well deserved rest. 🥵 pic.twitter.com/DEx5ryPrYu
— Squawka (@Squawka) March 9, 2023
With Manchester United now in control of the tie ahead of their visit to the Estadio Benito Villamarín next week, the likelihood of adding another trophy to their recently won Carabao Cup has just skyrocketed.