Manchester United and Marcus Rashford are unhappy with his recent performances manager Erik ten Hag has said after the striker’s red card contributed to their midweek Champions League loss but the Dutchman believes he will rediscover his form.
Rashford’s red card on Wednesday, for planting his foot on the ankle of FC Copenhagen’s Elias Jelert to protect the ball, was a turning point as United went from 2-0 up to lose 4-3.
“Marcus is not happy. We are not happy. He has high expectations from himself,” Ten Hag told reporters on Friday.
“At the moment he is not in his best form but I know he will be back. I know when the team is playing better he will play better, he will go and score goals, I am confident of that.
“He’s totally in the team and totally aware of everything, so I think he will be back on track.”
The beleaguered manager hopes Rashford get back on track soon with the team sitting a lowly eighth in the Premier League on 18 points after 11 games – six points off the top four.
“That can happen very quickly, and sometimes you need only one game and I’m sure that he will get there,” Ten Hag said of Rashford’s potential turnaround.
Mired in their worst started to a season since 1962 after successive 3-0 home defeats, United have lost nine of their last 17 games in all competitions.
At Old Trafford on Saturday they host Luton Town, who are 17th after their 1-1 draw with Liverpool last weekend.
The 26-year-old Rashford has one goal in 10 Premier League games and was chastised by Ten Hag for attending his birthday party after United’s humbling 3-0 derby loss to Manchester City.
The England striker’s sending off on Wednesday led to a massive momentum shift in Copenhagen and United’s defeat has left them on a knife edge with two Group A games to play.
“We have to win every game, so we are very disappointed if losing any game,” Ten Hag said.
“But finally it’s about the end result. It’s always about being in the process, thinking about the process, and then it’s about managing their process. It’s only where I focus on.”
Ten Hag, whose performance as manager has been called into question during his side’s poor run of form, was asked if he trusts his players as United flopped after Rashford’s red card.
“I think we often prove we can, like in Fulham, like at Brentford, that this team can overcome big setbacks. So yeah,” he said.
Bruno Fernandes scored in added time in United’s 1-0 win at Fulham last Saturday that allowed Ten Hag to breathe easy for one night at least. Scott McTominay scored two goals in added time in their 2-1 win over Brentford on Oct. 7.