Manchester United and England youngster Marcus Rashford has stated that he has been inspired and watched "so much" of legendary striker Ronaldo growing up, with Rashford set to take on Brazil on Tuesday.
Obviously a top player
Ronaldo is widely considered as one of the most talented players to have graced the pitch in the new millennium, playing for some of the greatest clubs in world football such as; PSV Eindhoven, Barcelona and Inter Milan.
However the best patch of form for two-time Ballon d'Or and World Cup winner came during his five seasons with La Liga giants Real Madrid as one of the infamous Galácticos, and Rashford witnessed the striker's talents at the tender age of five.
Ronaldo demolished The Red Devils in the quarter-finals of the 2002/03 Champions League as his hat-trick saw him applauded off the Old Trafford turf from all corners of the ground, 15 years on and Rashford has emerged as one of the brightest young talents which has seen him lauded by the legendary striker and Rashford stated that he has been inspired by the original Ronaldo throughout his short career.
"He was my brother's favourite player," Rashford said on the legendary striker ahead of Tuesday's clash. "That's why I've grown up watching so much of him and his games."
"It's all those clips on YouTube," the youngster stated. "And my first ever game that I saw live, he was playing in it."
"I always remember it. It was in 2003 and scored a hat-trick. I was only young, though," the 20-year-old reminisced. "He was obviously a top player who won a lot of things in his career."
"So when you know he's saying good things about you then it really stands out," he said. "He always played free."
"No matter where he was playing, he played free and went out there and expressed himself," Rashford added. "When you do that, that's when you play your best football."
Anything new takes getting used to
It safe to say the world has yet to see the best from Rashford just yet but it is also safe to say that he has yet to bring his full talents to the forefront so far in the new campaign, scoring just eight goals in 23 appearances for both club and country and none in his last five.
There can be mitigating circumstances with manager José Mourinho looking to use the youngster alongside Romelu Lukaku in a two-man attack, the youngster admitted that it does "take a bit of getting used to" but stated that it is all about "understanding each other's games".
"It’s a bit different but like anything new it takes a bit of getting used to,” he said on his position in the two-man attack "The more we do it the better we’ll become at it, so it’s just about familiarising ourselves with positions and responsibilities."
"Playing in a two is easier," Rashford concluded. "t’s just about understanding each other’s games and building those relationships, which you can do off the pitch as well.”