Manchester United still have to play one more match this season, the FA Cup final against Chelsea. The match will be played at Wembley this Saturday, but on Wednesday, there were some very positive news for four Manchester United players. Gareth Southgate announced his 23-man squad to play at the World Cup in Russia and four Devils were on the list.
Phil Jones, Ashley Young, Marcus Rashford and Jesse Lingard are all on the final list and should they stay healthy, they will play in Russia. England are set to play in Group G against Belgium, Tunisia and Panama. Here is how the four players did for Man United this season.
The centre-back played 23 Premier League matches this season. He started all of them, spending 1975 minutes on the pitch in the process. His season could be described as warm-cold, as Jones sometimes looked quite solid and sturdy, but on other occasions had problems to play at the highest level.
Some of that could be due to injuries he had had and Jones looked best this season in the early stages, when he had continuity of play time. England are expected to play with three centre-backs against strong sides at the World Cup and it will be interesting to see if he will part of those plans.
On the other hand, Ashley Young had an unexpected role this season. Jose Mourinho mostly used him as a left-back this term, as Matteo Darmian and Luke Shaw did not satisfy the manager’s standards. He made 30 Premier League appearances with 28 starts, playing 2448 minutes. He scored two goals and recorded four assists.
The highlight of his season was definitely the match against Watford when he unexpectedly scored a brace and Gareth Southgate will use his experience in a young side. Young is 32 years old and will be playing at his maiden World Cup, but is expected to play a smaller role in the squad.
The season of Marcus Rashford was one of mixed feelings. He made 35 appearances in the league, but only 17 of them came in starting lineup. Rashford was one of the players mentioned as a possibility to leave the club for more playing time, yet that looks like an unlikely prospect,
Rashford scored 13 goals and made six assists in all competitions and could be a very powerful tool in this Southgate’s team. His directness could change the outcome of matches and he also proved this term that he likes scoring in big games. The brace he scored against Liverpool this spring was just one of the examples.
This was his breakout season. He was one of the players mentioned as ‘never truly reaching their heights’, because he was 24 and had not made a huge impact on the way United played. That changed completely, as Lingard showed he was a late bloomer, playing the season of his career.
Scoring 13 goals and adding five assists proves that, but his performances in December and early January told even more about him. He was the one practically dragging United forward with his impeccable performances and Lingard could actually be in starting XI at the World Cup.