Goals? Who gives a f*ck: Marcus Rashford has mastered the elastico
Marcus Rashford has been a busy boy in 2020.
When he’s not raising millions of pounds and lobbying government to ensure children aren’t going hungry as Britain’s favourite philanthropist, he’s been enjoying his most productive season at Manchester United, helping them become the form team in England since the Premier League’s restart.
That still hasn’t been enough for some. Prior to United’s 2-2 draw with Southampton on Monday night, Bruno Fernandes spoke in defence of his team-mate, who had been criticised for scoring once in five league appearances since returning from a serious back injury which had threatened to end his season and see him miss Euro 2020 before football’s postponement.
A goal and two assists in five appearances didn’t seem like too bad a record, even if Rashford had been overshadowed by the form of fellow forwards Anthony Martial and, in particular, Mason Greenwood. But he offered the perfect riposte by scoring United’s equaliser against Southampton only minutes after seeing another smart finish ruled out for offside.
Midway through the second half, the 22-year-old then pulled off the kind of skill that makes you forget about scorelines and results and expected goals, and instead reminds you of why football will always have the ability to suddenly jolt you into a sense of unbridled joy.
In other words, Rashford pulled off an elastico so slick on poor, helpless Kyle Walker-Peters, the only correct response was: fuuuuuuuuuuucccccckkkkk.
It goes without saying that we love an elastico. We even wrote a piece detailing the history of that one particular trick, tracing it back to its Japanese-Brazilian origins.
Clearly a man of fine taste, Rashford also loves an elastico; Walker-Peters isn’t his first victim, as Sam Byram will attest.
While all the attention is on Greenwood and just how good the teenager can become, a sense remains that Rashford himself is still exploring the outer-reaches of his talent, still refining the rough edges of his game, still adding new strings to his bow.
If we worry about the games that pass by without Rashford troubling the scoresheet we’re only denying ourselves the joy of embracing a gifted, inspirational young man working to get the best out of himself and those around him.
Indeed, if Greenwood is ever short of a role model at Old Trafford, he should look no further than his team-mate on the opposite flank.