EXCLUSIVE – Manchester United open contract talks with £150m England forward who was involved in 3 goals last week
MANCHESTER UNITED are ready to open talks with Marcus Rashford on a new contract after his brilliant start to the season.
Rashford has scored three goals in his last four games, including the winner against Liverpool and a brace in Sunday’s impressive 3-1 win over league leaders Arsenal.
It was a sign that the 24-year-old is back to his best under new manager Erik ten Hag.
He has only this season left on his contract, but the club have the option to extend his contract for another year.
However, United are ready to sign him on a new five-year deal to remove any doubts about his future.
Ten Hag did not hesitate when asked if he wanted to keep him at Old Trafford for the long term.
He replied: ‘Absolutely. United are in control of the situation.”
Interim manager Ralf Rangnick has always been frustrated that Rashford cannot translate his performances in training onto the pitch on matchday.
But Rashford, like many players, was unhappy last season and that has changed.
Ten Hag said: ‘I see a happy Marcus Rashford, I see some phases of his game that we could improve and we have worked very hard over the last two and a half months with him on different aspects and he really likes it.
“He wants to translate that onto the pitch. It starts with happiness, he comes in every day smiling.”
Rashford first considered leaving Old Trafford last season.
His representatives even had a meeting with PSG officials last month.
Rashford has been dropped from the England squad and wonders if a transfer could revive his career.
He scored just five goals last season and none since scoring the only goal of the game in the 90th minute against West Ham in January.
However, Ten Hag was convinced he could bring him back to his best.
NO RASH DECISIONS
In a team meeting after the 4-0 humiliation against Brentford, Rashford also challenged the boss to give him the chance to be the number nine he had apparently promised.
Ten Hag did so in front of Cristiano Ronaldo.
United face Real Sociedad in the Europa League tomorrow night and could see Ronaldo back in the team as Ten Hag rotates his players.
Ronaldo has not started since the loss to Brentford.
The game will give Ten Hag the chance to give Casemiro, the new £70m purchase, a chance to start after Scott McTominay dropped him from the team.
This shows the strength in depth Ten Hag have after recruiting six new players this summer.
He said: ‘Players who are not in the team can come in at any time, do the job and maybe do it better than those who are in the team.
“But it takes more than 11 players to be successful. We have some very good players and when they come in they contribute to our success.”