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Wednesday 14 November 2018

Jamie Carragher claims Marcus Rashford must leave Manchester United to become a world-class striker

England's striker Marcus Rashford celebrates after scoring during a friendly international football match between England and Switzerland at the King Power stadium in Leicester last night
England's striker Marcus Rashford celebrates after scoring during a friendly international football match between England and Switzerland at the King Power stadium in Leicester last night

Liam Twomey

Marcus Rashford needs to leave Manchester United if he ever wants to develop into a world-class striker, according to Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher.

Romelu Lukaku has been United’s undisputed first-choice striker since arriving in a £75 million deal from Everton in the summer of 2017, leaving Rashford to get the majority of his first-team minutes from the substitutes’ bench or starting on the wing.

Rashford’s development has also slowed considerably under Jose Mourinho after his dazzling breakthrough during Louis van Gaal’s final season at United, though he delivered a reminder of his quality by scoring England’s winning goal in a 1-0 friendly victory over Switzerland on Tuesday.

Carragher suggested that the 20-year-old would be better served by joining Everton – the club where Lukaku refined himself into a top-class striker – in order to fulfil his huge potential.

"I don't see Rashford ever displacing Lukaku so long as he is there, but Lukaku was at Chelsea and he had to come away from there and go to Everton," Carragher said on Sky Sports after England’s win. "He ended up top scorer and then got his move to Manchester United.

"Everton is a club where someone like a Rashford knows he can play every week. Last season, he played poorly against Brighton, Mourinho had a pop at him and Lukaku went straight back in the next game. That is the problem he will always have.

"It gets to the point when you ask if he will ever be an England regular or Manchester United's real centre-forward.

"In that position, you have to be world-class. Rashford isn't world-class yet, but he might be when he's 24. Lukaku now looks like one of the best strikers so Rashford may have to move away to then move back to one of the big teams."

Rashford is not alone when it comes to young English players struggling to get regular opportunities in the Premier League. Chelsea midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek, another starter against Swtizerland, kept his place in the England squad despite not starting any of the Blues’ opening four league games this season.

"One of the biggest concerns is playing time for English players – that is shown by a number of the squad who came with us in Russia not getting opportunities," Southgate said in a press conference last month. "More of a concern is the young players who might be coming through to challenge that are not getting an opportunity to play.

"With the top-six teams we are on a graph which is a real concern with the decreasing number of English players.

"It’s not that the talent isn’t there – we have shown with the under-17 world champions, under-20 world champions and at the senior World Cup, there are good English players there. We have some very exciting young players that, if we’re not careful, we’ll lose without those opportunities."

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