Marcus Rashford says ‘tough period’ under Jose Mourinho made him a better player

April 21, 2020

Marcus Rashford believes the “tough period” he endured under Jose Mourinho at Manchester United has made him a better player.

England striker Rashford played under Mourinho from the beginning of the 2016-17 season until the Portuguese’s sacking in December 2018.

Rashford won an EFL Cup and Europa League in that time but often found his form under scrutiny, while he was largely employed on the wing with Zlatan Ibrahimovic or Romelu Lukaku playing centrally.

Under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Rashford has flourished and he has scored 19 goals in all competitions this season – a career best – before a combination of a back injury and the suspension of the Premier League due to the coronavirus pandemic curtailed his progress.

Despite perhaps not always playing at his best during Mourinho’s tenure, Rashford is convinced it is a time that will stand him in good stead.

“It was tough but I think when you look back on it in five or six years, they’re the moments that give you that mental toughness,” Rashford told the UTD Podcast.

“As an all-round player I’ve improved a lot and a lot of it is down to those two years under Jose.

“We had ups and downs. When I look back at it, it was a tough period but definitely a period that made me a better player.”

Rashford also hailed the impact Ibrahimovic, who is now back at Milan having enjoyed a stint in MLS with LA Galaxy after leaving United, has had on his career.

“His mentality was beyond anything I’d ever played with before,” he added. “He didn’t care what anyone would say to him or what anyone was saying about him.

“In terms of his mentality he was key to my development, especially when Jose was there because he was someone who had played under him before and he knew you had to be a certain type of way to survive under him.”