Arsene Wenger is well prepared for Man United's Marcus Rashford
Gunners boss Arsene Wenger is well prepared for Man United’s Rashford, who scored two goals in their last encounter over Arsenal in London
Rashford has now established himself in Mourinho’s squad, after starting the last six EPLâÂÂÂÂÂÂgames for United. Pics/Getty Images
London: Marcus Rashford is in line to start for Manchester United when they welcome Arsenal to Old Trafford today, but this time Gunners boss Arsene Wenger will know all about the England forward.
The 19-year-old burst onto the scene in February, hitting a brace in United’s 3-2 win over Wenger’s side just days after scoring twice on his first-team debut against FC Midtjylland.
Rashford has now established himself in Jose Mourinho’s squad, starting the last six Premier League games for the Red Devils. And he is likely to start as United’s main striker at the weekend, with Zlatan Ibrahimovic suspended and skipper Wayne Rooney expected to only be fit enough for the bench.
'Marcus killed us last year'
Asked about Ibrahimovic’s unavailability, Wenger instead focused on the man who will be looking to prevent Arsenal getting their first league win at Old Trafford in a decade. “Certainly they would prefer to have him (Ibrahimovic),” he said. “But we have as well players out and let’s not forget, last year the guy who killed us was Rashford. So let’s not speculate on any weakness of Man United,” he added.
The Frenchman, who goes in search of his first-ever Premier League win over Mourinho having failed to better his adversary in 11 previous meetings, also admits Rashford’s impact came out of the blue last season.
“Yes of course,” he replied when asked if Rashford had taken him by surprise. “Maybe a bit less, because I watched him against a Danish team in midweek and he scored and I could see straight away that this guy could be dangerous.
“On crosses his movement was good, the way he moved in the box was strong. He took everyone by surprise because no one knew him in England,” Wenger replied.
With records seemingly against Wenger, he has been keen to point out the 3-2 loss nine months ago — albeit damaging to Arsenal’s ultimately forlorn title ambitions, remains their only defeat away from home in the league in this calendar year.
Sanchez still doubtful
Wenger will assess the fitness of forward Alexis Sanchez ahead of the game after he returned from international duty with Chile yesterday morning. The 27-year-old has hit eight goals for the Gunners this season but, having scored twice for Chile in midweek despite carrying a hamstring injury, he could yet be forced to sit out the lunchtime kick-off.
Hector Bellerin is definitely out after injuring his ankle.
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