Marcus Rashford has proved adept at dead balls..

England coaches surprised by Marcus Rashford free-kick ability

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Marcus Rashford will be used sparingly during England's Euro 2016 campaign with Roy Hodgson likely to see him as something of an impact substitute in the closing stages of games.

The Manchester United youngster stormed his way into the England squad after a sensational start to his life in senior football and was selected ahead of Jermaine Defoe and Theo Walcott.

But the 18-year-old is still very much one for the future. He will have to compete with Harry Kane, Jamie Vardy and Daniel Sturridge for just one central striker position in a 4-3-3 formation and is unlikely to see much action even if England go all the way to the final.


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If he does get on the pitch, however, he could spring a surprise on the opposition, especially if he gets the chance to step up in a dead-ball situation.

According to the Daily Mail, Rashford has been pinging the free-kicks past Joe Hart, Fraser Forster and Tom Heaton ever since the Three Lions arrived at their training base in Chantilly, France, leaving England coaches stunned.

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They are seeing it as a secret weapon as Rashford has yet to display this ability for the Manchester United first-team. Wayne Rooney and Juan Mata share the free-kick duties for the Red Devils, leaving the youngster without a sniff.

The Beck-aldo

However, it seems he has the potential to become an adept free-kick expert with England coaches comparing his style to the great Cristiano Ronaldo. The Portuguese baffled goalkeepers back in his Manchester United days, with an unorthodox style causing the ball to sway and dip unpredictably.

Rashford has developed his own style, which the Mail claims to be a hybrid of Ronaldo's style with, you guessed it, David Beckham's. The former England captain is, of course, widely regarded as one of the best set-piece takers the game has ever seen.

If Rashford has actually taken the best from both players, he could be on his way to building the same reputation.

2012 MLS Cup - Houston Dynamo v Los Angeles Galaxy

One example

Manchester United fans may have seen Rashford score a free-kick before. Before the world had heard of him, the striker was taking set-pieces for the youth team. The occasion was a fifth round tie in the FA Youth Cup against Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane in 2015.

Rashford stepped up for a free-kick that looked ill-suited to a right-footed player but the swerve and pace on the ball gave the goalkeeper little chance of saving the shot, even though it was at his near post.

Take a look at the goal below

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Wayne Rooney
Steven Gerrard
England Football
Premier League
Manchester United
Euro 2016

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