Even though Marcus Rashford is 11 months older than Kylian Mbappe, the Frenchman has had a better start to his early career than the Manchester United youngster. With Mbappe having been named Golden Boy in 2017 and 4th place in the Ballon d’Or can Rashford emulate the pacey PSG forward?
It is well known that Rashford was thrown into the limelight by then Manchester United manager Louis Van Gaal, as all other strikers were not fit for the Europa League tie against Midtjylland FC and he grabbed the opportunity with both hands as he scored twice in the 5-1 win. He continued his blistering start with two more goals against Arsenal, the winning goal against Manchester City and then put United through to the semi-finals with a superb curling effort against West Ham United.
The skies were the limit for the young lad from Wythenshawe but under Jose Mourinho his career faltered. Despite being used more than any other United player, he struggled to consistently play under the Portuguese manager as he dropped out of the starting line-up. After two and half seasons under his guidance he managed 28 goals in 125 appearances.
However, under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer he is showing the form that could see him realise his potential. He currently has five goals under the Norwegian and has found his confidence again. Alongside Jesse Lingard and Anthony Martial he is quickly becoming the player that finished runner up in the 2017 Golden Boy competition.
With Mbappe a World Cup winner, a Ligue 1 champion twice, a Coupe de la Ligue winner and a Coupe de France winner at just the tender age of 20 years old he already has more trophies than Rashford who just has an F.A Cup and a Community Shield to his name has a lot of catching up to do. Some may argue that to win the league in France is not as difficult as it is in England but Mbappe has won it with two different clubs and was inspirational in both campaigns as he hit double figures in both seasons.
That is Rashford’s goal (if you pardon the pun). He has to find the back of the net more often and improve his finishing so he can hit double figures in a league season. With Ole at the helm of Manchester United you can see how he has focused on Rashford and his finishing has improved. With eight goals in the league already he is looking like he will hit double figures for the first time but he will be pushing himself all the time as you can see he just loves scoring goals.
Both of them have blistering pace and are not afraid to run at the opposing defender but Mbappe is probably the more natural finisher (17 league goals so far). However, as stated, if Rashford can score more then he can easily be as good as the Frenchman for Manchester United. It will be interesting to see who comes out on top when the two sides meet in the Champions League in a few weeks’ time.