MARCUS RASHFORD may be scoring for fun — but he is just as pleased with CLEAN SHEETS.
The forward, who has already hit a career-high 24 club goals this season, heads into a crucial three days for Manchester United.
They face Barcelona in tomorrow’s Europa League second leg at Old Trafford with the score level at 2-2.
United will then take on Newcastle in Sunday’s Carabao Cup final, hoping to lift their first trophy since 2017.
Rashford, 25, is under pressure to continue his scoring run — but will also be feeling the strain from the other end of the pitch because of boss Erik ten Hag’s non-stop demands for perfection.
And Rashford said: “It’s his determination. He doesn’t rest on anything and one of the big changes is the new manager and new coaches.
“They got the mentality back to what it was like previously. That’s been a massive thing for me and the team.”
Rashford’s renaissance under Dutchman Ten Hag has been remarkable.
Last season, beset by injury, self-doubt and thoughts of a move away from his boyhood club, Rashford hit the net just five times in 32 appearances.
His double in Sunday’s 3-0 victory over Leicester meant he has scored 16 goals in 17 games since returning from World Cup duty with England.
But he is just as pleased with keeper David De Gea and his defensive team-mates at the way they are performing.
Victory over the Foxes was the 18th time this season United have not conceded — with the Spaniard unbeaten on 15 occasions.
De Gea has ten Prem clean sheets over 24 games, while at the same stage last season he had five.
Rashford stresses the whole mindset has changed since Ten Hag replaced the hapless Ralf Rangnick.
He added: “If we are 3-0 or 2-0 up and concede a goal, he’s not happy about it and that starts to spread.
“Now, all of a sudden me and the forwards are desperate to help David and the defence keep a clean sheet.
“If we are winning 1-0, yes, it’s massively important while if we were winning 4-0, in the past it was less important if the other team scored a goal.
“Now we are striving to be the best we can be — and at our best, we don’t concede.”
While Rashford gives credit to Ten Hag and his backroom staff for helping him return to form, he claims to be feeling fresher than ever.
He told Astro SuperSport: “It’s down to having had a proper rest in the summer.
“Being able to wind down and switch off, which I haven’t really done since I started.
“That was one of the reasons I was just hungry and wanted to get the season started.”