Marcus Rashford’s seven iconic moments for Man United, England and more

Marcus Rashford made his senior debut for Manchester United five years ago and the England international has rightly received plaudits for his contributions on and off the field.

Rashford is the latest academy product to represent Manchester United, following the footsteps of David BeckhamRyan Giggs and Paul Scholes.

Despite being just 23, Rashford is an experienced member of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's squad and to celebrate his brilliance, we take a look at his most iconic moments.

Senior debut for Manchester United

Having initially been named as a substitute leading up to the game, fellow striker Anthony Martial picked up an injury in the warm up, ultimately paving the way for Rashford to make his first start under Louis van Gaal.

Man United's Europa League round of 32 matchup against FC Midtjylland in the 2015/16 season was the moment Rashford announced himself to the Theatre of Dreams.

Marcus Rashford bagged two second half against FC Midtjylland on his debut for Manchester United
Marcus Rashford bagged two second half against FC Midtjylland on his debut for Manchester United

What followed was truly mesmerizing. Rashford bagged two second half goals in front of the Stretford End to inspire Man United to a 5-1 victory against the Danish club. The win also saw them progress into the next round.

Free school meals campaign

This is arguably Rashford's most pivotal and important moment of his career, and it was one not even relevant with soccer.

With the whole world at a stand still from the Covid-19 pandemic, many were left feeling deflated and struggling to cope with the tough measures introduced by the UK government. 

In particular, the vulnerable were at risk, with many children who have free school meals, facing an extremely difficult few months ahead.

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Up stepped Rashford to plead to the government to extend the free school meals campaign. He also encouraged restaurants and food services around the country to offer free meals to those in need.

The topic is close to Rashford's heart after admitting he himself benefited from the government's meal scheme growing up.

Rashford has continued his push for better service for those with limited access to food and has regularly raised awareness with UK prime minister Boris Johnson, who he has been in regular contact with about the situation.

His activism saw the government reverse their decision to scrap food vouchers for families during the summer in 2020 on UK shores.

Exceeding England expectations

After an electrifying first few months in his United career, Rashford was tipped by many as a possible outside option to go to the 2016 European Championships.

His form over the remaining weeks of the season led to England coach Roy Hodgson selecting him for the tournament.

Before the team set off to the tournament, there was a warm up game against Australia, and Rashford was given his debut and took the opportunity with both arms as he opened the scoring three minutes into the game.

The forward is expected to make England's squad of 23 for the 2021 European Championships in the summer
The forward is expected to make England's squad of 23 for the 2021 European Championships in the summer

Despite England's disappointing exit at the European Championships to heavy underdogs Iceland, Rashford came out the tournament with his reputation intact, unlike the majority of the squad and management involved.

Fast forward five years and Rashford has amassed 40 international caps with 11 goals to his name.

He was also part of the England squad which got to the semi finals of the 2018 FIFA World Cup and scored in the penalty shootout win over Colombia in the round of 16 matchup.

Champions League hero

With Man United down 2-0 on aggregate from their Champions League round of 16 first leg at home against Paris Saint-Germain, and the return leg in Paris, the chances of progression looked slim in the French capital.

To add to the unlikely hope of a comeback, star midfielder Paul Pogba was suspended and several youth players were forced to make their first European start because of a catalgue of injuries to the first team.

After an enthralling game with United leading 2-1 on the night and trailing 3-2 on aggregate, United needed just one more to pull off a miraculous comeback.

With time ticking away, a handball from PSG defender Presnel Kimpembe in stoppage time led to a lengthy and tense VAR check to see if it was a penalty. Eventually the penalty was given and Rashford stepped up to take it.

With so much on the line and with it literally being the last kick of the game, the tie would be decided by Rashford from 12 yards out.

Blasting it into the left hand corner, Man United fans were sent into frenzy all around the world as they managed the impossible. Rashford was yet again the man of the moment.

Premier League debut against Arsenal

Three days after his heroics in Europe, Rashford was back in from the start for Man United in a crunch game against rivals Arsenal.

Surely he wouldn't be able to top his professional debut a few days earlier?

Well he did, and in spectacular fashion again with another two goals. The only difference this time was he also produced an assist to guide the team to a 3-2 win.

It was a much welcomed distraction for van Gaal, who was under pressure to deliver results after an inconsistent campaign.

Manchester Derby

By now, Rashford had garnered the reputation of being fearless no matter the occasion and this was once again on show at the Etihad, with a sole goal from the striker securing the bragging rights.

Rashford's stock could not have been any higher, especially after Man United fans witnessed a fiery encounter between the teenage sensation and Argentina international Martin Demechelis.

Rashford
Rashford

The confrontation led to a scuffle between the players on both sides with Rashford at the center of it.

Not only was "The Prince of England" showcasing his ability in front of goal, he was also proving he had the fight and passion to represent the club. 

Brace in win over arch rivals

Ahead of United's clash with rivals Liverpool in March 2018, Rashford had not scored against Jurgen Klopp's team in his three previous appearances.

With Liverpool's defensive addition of Virgil van Dijk, they had transformed into a side that could not only score goals but also keep clean sheets.

However, Rashford produced an explosive first half display and bagged a brace to help Man United earn a 2-1 victory.

Liverpool's Trent Alexander-Arnold had a game to forget and admitted it was the toughest game of his career at the time.

At 23, plenty of defenders will be fearing the worst with there being more to come from Man United's own.

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