Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been putting Marcus Rashford through the same finishing drills that turned Cristiano Ronaldo into an Old Trafford legend in a bid to emulate the Portuguese superstar.
The Norwegian decided to sell Romelu Lukaku to Inter Milan this summer and has told Rashford he wants him to step up to fill the void left by the Belgian.
Like Ronaldo, Rashford has spent most of his early United career on the wings but Solskjaer now wants the 21-year-old to get into central positions.
According to the Mirror, Solskjaer has been personally undertaking striking drills with Rashford and he’s been leaning on the same sessions that helped Ronaldo move from a tricky winger into a deadly forward.
The sessions are focused on one and two-touch finishes, while Rashford is encouraged to make runs from out-to-in like he did to good effect against Chelsea for United’s third goal last weekend.
It is clearly an area in which Solskjaer feels comfortable, given he bagged 126 goals in 366 appearances for the Reds. Solskjaer was sidelined with a long-term knee injury when he witnessed from the sidelines how Ronaldo transformed his playing style.
The Norwegian started taking his coaching badges alongside Sir Alex Ferguson when Ronaldo made the move from an inconsistent wide man to a single-minded striker.
Much of the credit was attributed to Rene Meulensteen, who worked tirelessly with the Portuguese star to transform his mentality.
Ronaldo was given DVDs of Ruud van Nistelrooy, Louis Saha, Andy Cole and Solskjaer to study their decision-making and movement in front of goal. The winger bagged 12 goals in the 05-06 season and followed that up with an improved 23 goal tally the following season.
However, Ronaldo then jumped to an astonishing 42 goals in 07-08 and there is a belief within Old Trafford that Rashford can do the same.
Rashford scored twice during United’s 4-0 rout against Chelsea and will be hoping to add to his good start against Wolves at Molineux on Monday.