Marcus Rashford enjoyed the highest-scoring season of his Manchester United career in 2019/20.
The England international netted 22 times across all competitions (Transfermarkt), as well as laying on 11 assists.
As the new campaign comes into view, Rashford – who missed England’s recent Nations League matches through injury – still feels he could have done more last time out.
Rashford was quoted by ESPN: “I missed four or five months and in my mind, I could have done much more this season… but for whatever reason, it didn’t happen.
“I never lose touch with reality and I know next season, I have to come back better than I was last season.”
Rashford is clearly a harsh self-critic, but that desire to always search for more will stand him in good stead at United.
Perhaps it is also informed by his poor form post-lockdown.
Rashford didn’t look fully fit in the closing weeks of the season and the news that he was pulling out of the England squad with a lingering injury went a long way to explaining those sub-par performances.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has also underlined the importance of scoring the simple or scruffy goals to United’s forwards, and Rashford missed open nets at home to Sheffield United and Southampton last season.
The latter came in a match United drew late on. Rashford has also called on his team-mates to improve their consistency in the new campaign.
“We can’t lose sight of what’s important, and that’s our own team’s development and to keep improving. We play our best and we improve most when we concentrate on ourselves as individuals and as a team.
“We’ve had some tough times and some times where we’ve been unstoppable. But we need to find that consistency, that’s the biggest thing for us.
“We have quite a young team, so if we can find that consistency, that will be important for us.”
United produced an unbeaten league run after lockdown and the big challenge for the coming season is to carry that professionalism and consistency on.
The standards required to compete for the Premier League now are relentless.
Rashford is aware that United cannot afford our performance level to oscillate as wildly as it did at times last season if that gap to the summit is to be bridged.
It’s a good thing that Rashford is critical of himself and his team-mates. United are on the right track but plenty more is needed and it’s that attitude which has the best chance of taking us where we want to go.
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