Marcus Rashford explains how Ronaldo changed his career

He was five at the time, a United supporter who while disappointed by his team's defeat was left elated and fascinated by what he had just seen, in particular by the contribution of Ronaldo (the original one), who scored a hat-trick and played with such verve and ruthlessness that he received a standing ovation from the majority of the crowd upon being substituted on 67 minutes.

Encouraged by his older brother Dwaine, now Rashford' s agent, Rashford studied videos of the Brazilian striker and modelled his game accordingly, but it was those goals on that crisp evening that planted seeds that have blossomed into Rashford's game: that speed of dribble, the ability to run at defenders full pelt and keep the ball away from them at all costs.

'He always played free. No matter where he was playing, he went out there and expressed himself.

He said: "My first ever game that I saw live, Ronaldo was playing in it".

'It was at Old Trafford and I always remember it.

"Strikers have to be hungry to score and I see that with him".

'He was obviously a top player who won a lot of things in his career, ' Rashford said, 'so when you know he's saying good things about you then it really stands out.' If Rashford wants to really stand out; his time is now. When you do that, that's when you play your best football.

'I think you [learn] naturally.

Marcus Rashford has the world at his feet.

"When you're young you watch clips of the best players in the world and try to emulate them, so it just tends to happen naturally".

"It's a bit different but like anything new it takes a bit of getting used to", he said. "Those sort of players are rare, but Brazil had two of them". I bumped into Ronaldinho in the summer. Because Rashford has grown into a player who has earned comparisons with Ronaldo, most importantly from el fenomeno himself. He was in a Nike complex where we were doing some training and he had some commercial stuff to do. "But the more we do it the better we'll become at it".

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