Rio Ferdinand has stated that Manchester United striker, Marcus Rashford, is too inconsistent to be considered a world class player.
The former player-turned-pundit was speaking to talkSport and asserted that the Mancunian striker lacks consistency in his game, something essential to become one of the best.
The England international has had a horrible start to the season, scoring only two goals in 20 appearances for the Red Devils this campaign.
This is in stark contrast to the fine form of last year where Rashford was unstoppable and found the net 30 times in all competitions. Such wonderful performances led him to win the club’s Sir Matt Busby Player of the year award.
Nonetheless, Ferdinand did not mince his words when summing up the academy product’s ability.
When asked by the hosts of the show if Rashford was world class, he replied, “No, he’s not. He has world-class potential, but he’s not a world-class player. He’s not proved it enough.”
The Champions League winning defender argued that to be considered at a world-class level, a player needs to “sustain it over a period of time but at the moment he comes in flurries.”
This would seem a fair assessment as the England international has only scored more than 20 goals three times in the eight seasons previous to the current one.
Unless he finds an incredible purple patch, he is unlikely to do so again this season. (All statistics from transfermarkt.com)
Ferdinand went on to argue that the player can do things on a pitch “that take your breath away” but should be able to deliver these moments more frequently due to his experience.
The pundit remarked, “I still catch myself and have to remind myself ‘he’s not a young kid anymore’, he’s an experienced player in that changing room who is looked at as a leader’.”
Although this is something that the academy graduate seems to struggle with. Various pundits like Alan Shearer have recently critiqued the player’s body language and he has recently been dropped due to a low work rate off the ball.
The former United defender also told the radio show that he does not understand how a player who is a local lad and who has been at the club so long, has not volunteered to be the captain.
He claimed, “If I was him, being at the club that long and with the status he’s got in the game, when the captaincy came up, I’d be wanting to have that armband because I think he’s got the experience and the gravitas to do that.”
The former United number five asserted that players need to focus on “graft” before anything else. He claimed, “Before you talk about ability and getting crosses in and scoring and assisting, you chase that full-back up and down that pitch and you run him into the ground – then you can start playing your football.”
Ferdinand went on to echo pundits like Mark Hughes and claim that the fundamentals of hard work that are applicable to any level of football, just aren’t there for the Manchester-born player.
In addition, The Peoples Person reported today that it is even possible that not only is the player not working hard but also could be “at the heart” of unrest in the dressing room due to unhappiness with the style of football being played by the manager.
All United fans will be hoping this is not true, as there is little better as a fan of this club than watching academy players make it at the highest level.
Rashford has been the symbol of this since his breakthrough in 2016. Supporters across the globe probably don’t care much if he is world class or not, they just want to see him working hard for the team and crucially, finding the back of the net like he is capable of doing.