Mason Greenwood must become more selfless to make Manchester United a better team
Marcus Rashford is not the only Manchester United forward going through a rough patch in front of goal right now.
Mason Greenwood has only one goal in his last 10 matches, at home to Young Boys, and has not scored in the Premier League since his long range effort against Leicester in October.
After beginning the season with three goals in his first three games, Greenwood has netted just two goals in 19 matches.
The split has a fairly key cut-off point too. The three in three game stretch came before Cristiano Ronaldo signed, and he has struggled ever since.
It is perhaps notable too that the goal against Young Boys came when Ronaldo was not in the side.
Hopes United fans had of a dream Greenwood and Ronaldo partnership clicking have not come to fruition. Ronaldo’s insinuations in his Sky Sports interview about young players needing to listen and improve, could be partly targeted at the youngster.
The answer lies with Greenwood himself
Let’s not blame Ronaldo for Greenwood’s form going awry, although it may of course be a factor. Greenwood has started the last two matches for Manchester United with Ronaldo absent, and he has failed to score.
In fact there is an argument Greenwood’s desperation to impress is hindering him, and the team.
Greenwood is United’s most exciting attacking player. At 20-years-old, he has broken numerous records already, but his progress is beginning to stall. United need him to kick on.
The simplest solution for Greenwood to make is to become more of a team player in the final third. At the moment he looks too anxious in front of goal, and he is snatching at chances.
Marcus Rashford’s embarrassing moment against Villa where he failed to follow up a rebound came after a scenario where Greenwood could have passed him the ball for a clear strike at goal. Greenwood shot from a difficult angle and saw his shot saved.
In the league game Greenwood screwed a shot wide across goal when he could have passed to an unmarked Edinson Cavani for a tap in.
Greenwood is capable of scoring from these difficult scenarios, we have seen him do it before, but he does not have to try when there are better options available. It’s hard to tell a top goalscorer not to be selfish, as that’s part of what makes them great, but United need Greenwood to be more selfless right now.
The youngster is United’s most exciting attacking player. He is considered the most talented forward to come through Carrington in a generation, able to score with both feet, and create.
United need him to apply more focus to the creative side to his game, rather than to desperately try to solve his goal drought. If he focuses on supplying his teammates when they are better placed, he may find he relaxes a little and the goals become to flow a little more naturally too.
It is no use blaming Ronaldo for Greenwood’s malaise, the number 7 is here for the forseeable future. The answer to Greenwood’s loss of form must come from Greenwood himself.
If Greenwood can become a more well rounded forward, United will become a better team. Right now the side needs everybody pulling in the same direction, together, and parking their own agendas.
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