Premier League legend Alan Shearer has reportedly offered Marcus Rashford help to overcome his dip in form.
The winger recently returned to action following an operation on his shoulder, but as of yet has failed to recapture the form he enjoyed previously.
Rashford has made a total of 15 appearances across all competitions but has only managed to find the back of the net three times, a worrying statistic for United manager Ralf Rangnick.
But it’s not only the England star’s form that has fans and pundits concerned, Rashford’s entire demeanour appears downtrodden, sometimes even miserable, in recent appearances.
Expectations for Rashford post-surgery were initially high, with the winger hoping that being injury-free after such a long time would improve his output.
As reported by the Guardian, Rashford said: “I didn’t want to let anyone down but ultimately looking at some of my performances towards the end of last season I felt like I was. When I step on the pitch I always give 100%. Physically my 100% just wasn’t possible. It’s been a hard one but I’m coming back physically and mentally stronger.”
If anyone can understand the pressure that arises from being under the spotlight, it’s surely the Newcastle hero. Shearer scored 260 Premier League goals across his glittering career and captained his national team 34 times.
Shearer was a spectator at Old Trafford during United’s FA Cup match against Aston Villa. During the discussion at half-time, the ex-Newcastle striker told the BBC: “I get Marcus Rashford has had injuries and he’s struggling for confidence,
“He’s done amazing work off the pitch, but it looks as though everything is a chore, as if he is not enjoying his football.”
The striker has attempted to convince Rashford that it is possible for him to overcome this tough period and offered him advice on handling the pressures that come with the role.
But Shearer is not the only former England captain to pick up the phone, as Rashford has reportedly also been contacted by Paul Ince.
Ince along with Shearer will also understand the pressures facing Marcus Rashford, as a two-time title winner with United. Ince has maintained his view that Rashford should be kept in the side despite his form.
Ince said: “When you look at Rashford, he doesn’t look happy. I’m thinking: ‘Why is he not happy?’
“I wouldn’t drop Rashford for Saturday. If that was me, I’d say: ‘Marcus, where do you want to play? Number ten? Left-hand side? Are you not getting enough of the ball? Are you not making the right decisions when you get it? How do you feel?’
“But to drop him could impact him more than playing him.”
The phone calls were said to have lifted Rashford’s spirits, and it will be interesting to see how England’s young winger handles the coming weeks.