Manchester United’s loss to Liverpool certainly appeared to be a foregone conclusion. If anything, it is fair to say that the 2-0 scoreline flattered both sides, especially given how many close opportunities the Merseyside Reds had to double their lead after Virgil van Dijk’s opener and prior to Mo Salah’s injury-time screamer.
As for the Red Devils, a lack of quality was the simple plague of woe, with the home side outmaneuvering them on almost every count. Having said that, there were at least two isolated incidents when United ought to have scored.
The first arrived when Andreas Pereira was close enough to see the ball skirt by the goal whereas in the second-half Anthony Martial’s shot wasn’t on target to bother the Anfield crowd.
This was also a comment on the lack of clinical talent at United, with Marcus Rashford out injured.
However, the latest news about the Englishman wasn’t a healthy one either.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer confirmed the worst after the game, stating: “He’s suffered a bad injury. Yes, [it’s a double stress fracture]. It’s not something that has happened before.”
An earlier tweet from Henry Winters painted an even bleaker outlook on the whole situation.
Rashford was carrying a single stress fracture in his back, now has a double stress fracture after Wolves game. Expected to be out for 2-3 months. Also has piece of floating bone in his ankle requiring non-intrusive surgery to remove. Been playing thru immense pain to help #mufc
— Henry Winter (@henrywinter) January 19, 2020
As such, Rashford’s incredible run of games ought to be viewed with even more admiration. At the same time, the unprecedented, career-best tally of 19 goals seems like it will stay that way for quite some time.
Now, it is up to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to take definitive action and land an adequate replacement for these months. With just over 10 days left in the transfer window, any opportunity will have to be an incredibly lucky one.
Solskjaer to the BBC: 'We're always looking at chances to improve the squad. With Marcus out for a while we have to look at it closely.' #mufc
— Samuel Luckhurst (@samuelluckhurst) January 19, 2020
On the other hand, Mason Greenwood may have to step up to the mantle and prove that he can convert his present brilliant tally into an all-out massive one to fill the gap left by Rashford.
Solskjaer’s and United’s time certainly has gotten a whole lot harder with this injury, but there may be light at the end of the tunnel yet.