Updated March 1st, 2024 at 11:21 IST

Marcus Rashford explains decision to forego pic opportunity with Rooney & CR7 during academy days

Manchester United's Marcus Rashford discusses his decision not to take a photo with Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo during his time at the Red Devils academy

Reported by: Aryan Suraj Chadha
Marcus Rashford, Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo | Image:AP
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Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney undeniably stand out as two of the greatest footballers in Manchester United's illustrious history. Their prime years at the club coincided, creating an era of unmatched skill and synergy on the field throughout the 2000s. Their influence has resonated far beyond their time at United, shaping and inspiring generations of footballers, particularly within United's renowned academy. Among these prodigies are stars like Marcus Rashford and Jesse Lingard, who have expressed their indebtedness to Ronaldo and Rooney's legacy for their development. However, Rashford has recently teased a significant revelation, promising an intriguing new chapter in the story of these iconic figures at Manchester United.

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Marcus Rashford shares a tale from his academy days at Manchester United 

Marcus Rashford, Manchester United's attacker, recently offered a gripping account from his academy days, detailing an interaction with Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo. Rashford said that on a visit to the academy, he denied the opportunity to take a pictures with the renowned partnership, stating that he would only do so if he earned the right to play with them.

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In a candid blog written for The Players' Tribune, Marcus Rashford reflected on this unforgettable moment: 

“I remember around that time, when I was still trying to get signed, Wazza and Cristiano came by to do something with all the academy lads, and I was just looking at them in awe, you know what I mean?"

“They had a photographer there, and at the end all us kids had a chance to get a picture with them, and I remember hanging in the back away from everyone. I remember my brother saying, ‘Go take a picture with Wazza, bro! What are you doing???’"

“I said, ‘I don’t need a picture.’ He said, ‘Don’t need a picture???’ I said, 'I’m going to be playing alongside them some day'."

“I think I was the only kid who didn’t get a photo. After we had turned down the money, there was just this hunger inside me. I didn’t see myself as a kid anymore. I had to grab my opportunity and change our lives, period."

“To be able to go on and really live that dream, as a kid from Manchester… As a kid from Hulme, Moss Side, Chorlton, Withington, Wythenshawe… If you think I would ever take that for granted, then you simply do not know me.”

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Marcus Rashford began his career at Manchester United at the age of seven in 2005, when he entered the club's academy. His hard work and devotion paid off as he made his first-team debut against Danish side FC Midtjylland in the Europa League, scoring two goals in a 5-1 triumph in 2016. Since then, the English striker has scored 128 goals in 391 games, also providing 74 assists for the Red Devils.

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Throughout his career, Rashford has had the opportunity to play with football icons such as Wayne Rooney, both at Manchester United and for the England national team. Furthermore, he got the incredible opportunity to play alongside Cristiano Ronaldo when the Portuguese superstar returned to Old Trafford for his second term with the Red Devils.

 

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Published March 1st, 2024 at 11:21 IST