‘Rashford never scored headers before Benni’ – Give McCarthy flowers?

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Marcus Rashford and Benni McCarthy, Manchester United
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Fans pick up on one area of Marcus Rashford’s game that has improved dramatically since Benni McCarthy’s arrival at Manchester United.

Marcus Rashford extended his outstanding recent goalscoring record on Sunday as he netted Manchester United’s opener in their 2-0 victory over Leeds United.

The Red Devils left it late, but Rashford headed them into the lead ten minutes from time, before Alejandro Garnacho doubled the visitors’ lead five minutes later.

While Rashford goals are commonplace in recent months—he has 13 goals in his last 15 matches—it was a rare thing indeed to see him scoring with his head.

Predictably, Africa’s supporters were quick to praise Benni McCarthy for transforming this area of his game.

  1. Rashford never used to score headers

    While Rashford has been in sensational recent form, heading has largely been an under-developed area of his game.

    It’s something that @always_Koki believes has been transformed since the arrival of the South African first team coach.

    “Rashford never used to score headers before Benni came,” wrote @always_koki. “This is the one area of Rashford’s development I credit [McCarthy] and Erik ten Hag for.”

  2. He’s scoring Benni-type goals

    Murrendeni Magara was one of several supporters who are identifying increasing similarities between Rashford’s current performances and McCarthy’s style of play.

    “Rashford is scoring Benni-type of goals,” she wrote on her @MagaraMurendy handle. “Benni was a header specialist.”

  3. A footballing brain

    Papa Esto, writing on his @ManLikeEsto handle, delivered a particularly eloquent tribute to the great ex-Ajax striker.

    “That's why Benni McCarthy is South Africa's all-time top goalscorer,” he wrote, after Rashford had put United ahead.

    “Was a threat at Porto, Blackburn Rovers and an aging Benni was stat-padding the 1st Division in SA,” he added. “Also was brilliant as a manager/First Team Coach for Cape Town City and Amazulu.

    “A footballing brain.”

    Clearly, it’s now Rashford and United who are benefiting from Benni’s footballing genius.

  4. Unmatched

    “What Benni has done for Rashford is unmatched,” wrote @KaitHunt14. “Truly.”

    Does McCarthy deserve more praise for the work he’s done with Rashford at Old Trafford?

  5. United’s best signing?
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    United’s best signing?

    Forget Antony, forget Christian Eriksen, forget Lisandro Martinez, forget Casemiro, Ntando Ngema believes that there should be no debate about United’s best signing of the Ten Hag era.

    “Benni has been United’s best signing so far,” he wrote.

  6. A machine

    “Benni really turned Rashford into a goalscoring machine,” wrote @shang10f1. “The level of consistency too.”

    He certainly has a point, with the England forward being in immense form since returning from the World Cup.

    Since returning from Qatar, there have only been two games—against Crystal Palace and Reading—in which Rashford failed to either score or register an assist.

  7. Set to break his record

    “Marcus Rashford's previous best goalscoring season was 22 goals in all competitions,” wrote @BusbyBulletin. “He's on 21 goals already and we are only in February.

    “Erik ten Hag, Benni McCarthy and the rest of the coaching staff, along with Rashford of course,” he added. “Well done.”

    How many goals will Rashford end the year on at this rate?

  8. Thanks to Benni

    A significant number of United fans were keen simply to offer their thanks to McCarthy for the work he’s done with Rashford, who has steadily silenced his many doubters at Old Trafford.

    “Amazing talent,” wrote @Cr07Kaito. “Glad Benni McCarthy is teaching him.”

    @EmperorG24 agreed.

    “Rashford eating net for fun,” he wrote. “Thank you Benni McCarthy.”