Marcus Rashford is inevitable! Man Utd winners, losers and ratings as in-form striker scores again to break Leeds hearts

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The England striker has now scored 13 goals in 14 games since the World Cup as his late strike at Elland Road helped seal a 2-0 win for the Red Devils

You can try anything you want, but right now, Marcus Rashford cannot be stopped. Just as Manchester United looked like they would drop points against Leeds United for the second time in a week on Sunday, up popped Rashford with his 21st goal of the season to get Erik ten Hag's side back to winning ways.

In a bruising encounter at Elland Road, both sides had chances, but as the game entered its final 10 minutes, it seemed that for the second time in five days, both sides would have to settle for a point.

Enter Rashford. The England striker managed to find himself a yard of space in the Leeds penalty area to head home Luke Shaw's inviting cross and send the visiting United fans into raptures.

The points were wrapped up five minutes later as teenage substitute Alejandro Garnacho weaved his way through the Leeds defence before beating Illan Meslier at his near post, as United's 2-0 win moved them, at least temporarily, up to second in the table.

GOAL breaks down all the winners and losers from a big United win...

  1. The Winners
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    The Winners

    Marcus Rashford:

    It's difficult to find a more in-form player in world football now, as Rashford's dream run since the World Cup shows no sign of slowing down. He has scored 13 goals in 14 games since arriving back from Qatar, and seems to have added bullet headers to his repertoire if the two games over Leeds this week are anything to go by. If this purple patch continues, then expect United to be celebrating multiple trophy wins come the end of the season. On a personal level, it's just great to have the Marcus Rashford we all fell in love with back in our lives.

    David de Gea:

    On the day he became the first foreign player to make 400 Premier League appearances for the same club, De Gea was outstanding, making three crucial saves to deny Crysencio Summerville either side of half-time. With Harry Maguire recalled and Luke Shaw again playing as a makeshift centre-back, De Gea could have been forgiven for being unsure of himself with an unfamiliar backline in front of him, but he stood up to everything that was thrown at him to equal club legend Peter Schmeichel on 178 clean sheets at the top of United's all-time list.

    Luke Shaw:

    It's perhaps gone under the radar, but Luke Shaw's resurgence after an underwhelming 2021-22 season has been excellent to watch. Two years ago, it seemed like the England defender had got his game together, but he was one of many in a United shirt to struggle last season. Under Ten Hag, though, he has been back to his best, and whether at left-back or centre-back, he is becoming one of United's most reliable performers once more. His cross for Rashford's goal was sumptuous, and was one of many superb crosses he put in during the game.

  2. The Losers
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    The Losers

    Wout Weghorst:

    Ten Hag ignored calls to leave Weghorst out his line up after a run of underwhelming performances, but the Dutch striker did little to repay his manager's faith. The Burnley loanee was largely anonymous for much of the game, and played the final 20 minutes as a No.10 behind Rashford. He will claim the assist for Garnacho's late strike, but the teenage winger did all the hard work after collecting a bog-standard pass from Weghorst around 30 yards from goal. With Rashford now showing he can score goals while playing centrally as well as out wide, Weghorst's time in the line up might be about to end.

    Leeds' survival hopes:

    Leeds are still on the look out for a new manager after sacking Jesse Marsch on Monday, but they would have been buoyed if they could have avoided defeat against Manchester United in back-to-back games this week. They came close, but after defeat here they are now in a position where they could be sitting in the bottom three when they kick off against relegation rivals Everton next week. A home game against fellow strugglers Southampton follows the week after, meaning the new manager - whoever that might be - needs to hit the ground running.

    Fans of both teams:

    It's no secret that Leeds and Manchester United fans do not like each other, but that is no excuse for some of the disgusting chants that were heard at Elland Road on Sunday. Whether it was the home supporters singing about the Munich air disaster or the visiting fans chanting about the two Leeds supporters who were killed in Istanbul 23 years ago, neither should be tolerated. Premier League fans around the country have shown over decades that they can create the best atmospheres in European football without resorting to such offensive depths. The fact that such songs can be heard in 2023 is utterly depressing.

  3. Man Utd Ratings: Defence
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    Man Utd Ratings: Defence

    David de Gea (8/10):

    Made three key saves to keep out Summerville on a record-breaking day for the Spanish goalkeeper.

    Diogo Dalot (7/10):

    Kept the dangerous Gnonto relatively quiet and almost broke the deadlock when his rasping drive crashed back off the crossbar.

    Harry Maguire (6/10):

    Defensively sound on his return to the line up, though his passing was not always particularly accurate.

    Luke Shaw (8/10):

    Impressive as a makeshift centre-back yet again before moving back to the left and providing a superb cross for Rashford to head home the opener.

    Tyrell Malacia (7/10):

    Probably United's best player in the first half as he made some key interventions to deny Summerville. Replaced by Martinez on the hour as Ten Hag looked to shore up his defence.

  4. Midfield
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    Marcel Sabitzer (6/10):

    Again looked hurried in possession but battled well enough in what was a bruising afternoon in midfield.

    Fred (7/10):

    Casemiro he is not, but always puts a shift in, and did well to maintain his discipline after an early yellow card.

  5. Attack
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    Jadon Sancho (6/10):

    Recovered from an early crunching challenge by Adams to show some nice touches. Lasted an hour on his first start since October before being replaced by Garnacho.

    Bruno Fernandes (4/10):

    Missed a great chance to open the scoring right on half-time and found himself on the fringes of the game for long periods.

    Marcus Rashford (8/10):

    Inevitable at the moment. Scored his second crucial header in the space of five days to break Leeds hearts and maintain his superb goalscoring form.

    Wout Weghorst (3/10):

    Difficult to see what he offers United when they're in possession. Cleared a few set-pieces and claimed an assist for Garnacho's individual strike, but largely anonymous.

  6. Subs & Manager
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    Subs & Manager

    Alejandro Garnacho (7/10):

    Was bright after replacing Sancho and answered some of his midweek critics with an excellent individual goal to seal the points.

    Lisandro Martinez (6/10):

    Solid at the back as he slotted in alongside Maguire.

    Aaron Wan-Bissaka (6/10):

    Kept up the good work Dalot had done by limiting Gnonto's influence.

    Anthony Elanga (N/A):

    On for Rashford in stoppage time.

    Erik ten Hag (7/10):

    His changes to the line up didn't really work, but his substitutions were inspired. Bringing on Martinez so Shaw could revert to left-back eventually led to the opening goal, before Garnacho stepped off the bench to bag.