A former Old Trafford favourite has compared two men who have enjoyed very strong individual seasons respectively in England and France
Marcus Rashford and Kylian Mbappe are “definitely in the same bracket”, according to Louis Saha, who says there is nothing separating the Manchester United star and Paris Saint-Germain striker “in terms of quality”.
Rashford has contributed a career-high tally of 19 goals and six assists to United’s cause in 32 appearances this season, adding an end product to his game which had occasionally been lacking.
A serious back injury halted his progress in January, but he returned to full fitness during the coronavirus-enforced break in the campaign, and started United’s first game back against Tottenham on Friday.
Despite the fact that the 22-year-old looked rusty during the 1-1 draw, he will be expected to help fire the Red Devils back into the Champions League over the course of their final eight fixtures.
Mbappe, meanwhile, only has Europe’s elite competition left to look forward to following the cancellation of the Ligue 1 season in April .
The World Cup winner hit 18 goals in 20 top-flight outings as PSG marched towards a third successive domestic crown, and he could add the European Cup to his glittering CV when continental action resumes in August.
Mbappe has already won double the amount of trophies as Rashford, but Saha insists they are equal when it comes to individual talent.
Asked if the England international is at the same level as the Frenchman, the ex-United striker told Compare Bet : “Ability-wise? Yes. They’re both very fast players, they have the technical ability to get out of situations where they’re surrounded by two or three defenders.
“In terms of positions, Marcus and Kylian are quite similar. They like to play out wide but have also played up top. Kylian’s strength is that he is very direct, all the time. He doesn’t think twice.
“When he makes runs, you have to give him the ball, he’s so quick. That kind of directness is something we’ve also seen from Rashford.
“When he started, he was asking questions of defenders – ‘are you quick enough and good enough to keep me quiet for 90 minutes?’
“In terms of quality, they’re definitely in the same bracket. Mbappe has been able to achieve more consistency and approach the game without having to think too much.
“With United, Rashford has been part of a team in transition, so he couldn’t really express himself. He had to be a leader when perhaps it wasn’t his strength at first.
“He had to build qualities which should not have been his initial focus. Mbappe has taken advantage because he’s been able to play with PSG players who are at the very top level, so he’s been able to build confidence and try different things, a platform that Rashford hasn’t had so far.”