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19th Nov 2017

Marcus Rashford’s idol at Manchester United might surprise you

You learn something new every day

Darragh Murphy

Harry Kane isn’t the only English forward who fancies himself between the sticks.

Kane memorably went in goal after scoring a hat-trick against Asteras Tripoli in the Europa League three years ago but immediately let in a rather saveable free kick.

And Kane’s fellow countryman Marcus Rashford is also pretty confident of his ability as the last line of defence.

The Manchester United youngster has remarkably revealed that former Red Devils stopper Tim Howard used to be his hero when he first arrived at the United academy.

“My first season [at Fletcher Moss] I went in net,” Rashford told the Sunday Times. “The thrill of scoring a goal, you get the same thrill when you save a good chance.

“Howard was my idol. I used to have a little Tim Howard shirt. You watch, there’ll be a game [when he is called upon to go in goal]. I’m going to get the gloves one day!”

Rashford began playing for Fletcher Moss Rangers when he was five years old before he joined United’s academy at the age of seven.

He rose through the ranks at breakneck speed and now finds himself one of the most important players for both Jose Mourinho and Gareth Southgate

In many ways, Rashford represents the realisation of an unlikely dream for all young footballers who hope to make it big.

“In this area, so many kids love playing football,” Rashford added. “There were some at the club not as talented as others but they knuckled down because they love the game and everybody improved.

“It meant there was always huge competition, and as soon as one player went to an academy [at a professional club], it was an eye-opener to the rest. It showed what was possible.”