TEENAGE striker Marcus Rashford continued the dream start to his Manchester United career, scoring two goals and setting up another in a 3-2 win over title-chasing Arsenal in the Premier League on Sunday.
Only playing because of United’s chronic injury crisis, the 18-year-old Rashford marked his league debut by scoring in the 29th and 32nd minutes to put his team 2-0 ahead - three days after a double in the Europa League against FC Midtjylland on his senior United debut.
After former United striker Danny Welbeck replied for Arsenal, Rashford set up Ander Herrera for a shot from the edge of the area that deflected in off Laurent Koscielny.
Mesut Ozil made it 3-2 in the 69th but fifth-place United held on comfortably to move three points off the top four. Arsenal, which put in an off-color performance against a young and injury-hit United side, dropped five points behind leader Leicester and hasn’t won in the league at Old Trafford since 2006.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger was also impressed with Rashford, who hadn’t started a game above under-19 level before Thursday. “The timing and intelligence of his movement was great,” Wenger said. “He could be a very positive surprise for Man United.” With his direct running and composure, Rashford is showing no fear on the biggest stage and demonstrated to Van Gaal that the Dutchman has had a goal poacher at his disposal all along during the team’s rough patch this season. Injured pair Wayne Rooney and Anthony Martial are among the strikers unavailable to Van Gaal at present.
For his first goal, the young striker was lurking 12 meters out as Gabriel failed to adequately clear Guillermo Varela’s cross. A first-time shot was too pacey for Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech as Rashford became United’s third-youngest Premier League scorer.