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Erik ten Hag affirms Man Utd's intention to retain Marcus Rashford

Erik ten Hag has asserted Manchester United's firm stance against selling Marcus Rashford in the upcoming transfer window.

After signing a new five-year deal after hitting 30 goals last season, the 26-year-old academy product has scored just seven times in a poor campaign for all connected to the club.

Rashford was this week again linked with a move to Paris St Germain, which could provide United with a huge windfall at a time of Premier League profit and sustainability considerations.

It would represent pure profit on that front as he is a homegrown player but Ten Hag says financial benefits are outweighed by the importance of the forward to the future.

"We didn’t re-sign him last season for (five) years with the intention to sell him, no," Ten Hag said.

"He should be part of this project, so that is not a subject we talk about."

Ten Hag was speaking ahead of Sunday’s crunch FA Cup quarter-final against rivals Liverpool – a match that may go some way to deciding whether the manager remains part of the now Ineos-led project.

Injury-hit United have endured a tough season and need to overcome Jurgen Klopp’s side at Old Trafford to keep their last remaining hope of silverware alive.

They sit sixth in the Premier League and face an uphill battle to qualify for the Champions League but Ten Hag hopes Sunday can act as a catalyst to transform their season.

"Actually, we never got to turn around so far," Ten Hag said. "We had our opportunities, but we missed the opportunities (to turn things around).

"Sunday we have another good opportunity to get the momentum. I think the players, the team showed lately from January on we are in a very good series of games with a lot of wins, so they have to believe they can do it. Now we have to take the momentum.

"That is also what I feel when I train with them, during and around the games; that they have that belief, a good confidence, good spirit is there in the team. Go and play and get the turnaround."

United are underdogs heading into the quarter-final but Ten Hag expects to be boosted by the return to fitness of Rasmus Hojlund, Harry Maguire and Aaron Wan-Bissaka.

The latter is set to return after two months out, with centre-back Maguire and striker Hojlund back after missing three and four games respectively.

"We had a good week," Ten Hag said. "The players you mention returned on the pitch. Partly at the start of the week and today we had a session and they were all training.

"I think (they are available). We have tomorrow one session. Of course, we have to see how they recover from this but it looks good."

Ten Hag also provided a positive update on Mason Mount – who has been kept out for four months with a calf issue – and says Tom Heaton is back with fellow goalkeeper Altay Bayindir out.

"Tom Heaton is back as well," he said. "Also, it was very good Mason Mount trained also (the) whole week with us.

"First part of the week also partly but then also he had some full sessions with us, so it’s looking good."

Lisandro Martinez, Anthony Martial, Luke Shaw and Tyrell Malacia remain sidelined, while Jonny Evans has been dealing with calf and thigh problems recently.

United said "his game-time has been carefully managed", which is why he has not been included in Northern Ireland’s squad for their March internationals.

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