Ian Wright has criticised Ole Gunnar Solskjaer for playing Marcus Rashford against Wolves, despite the striker carrying a pre-existing back injury.
The England international was withdrawn just 16 minutes after coming on as a substitute during Manchester United‘s FA Cup third round replay victory over Wolves at Old Trafford last week, the 22-year-old suffering a double stress fracture to his back following a challenge by Matt Doherty, and is now expected to be out for around two to three months in what will be a blow for both club and country.
Following the clash, Solskjaer admitted that Rashford had first felt some discomfort during the victory at Burnley last month, and former Arsenal forward Wright has slammed the Norwegian’s management of the player who now faces a race to prove his fitness ahead of this summer’s European Championships with England.
“Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said he knew Marcus Rashford was struggling and played him against Wolves – now he’s out for three months,” Wright said on BBC Radio 5 Live. “We’re talking about an explosive player that’s going to need to be right.
'Marcus Rashford, #MUFC's most important player, is now out for three months – that's got to lie at the manager's door' 🚪👔
— BBC 5 Live Sport (@5liveSport) January 20, 2020
“Solskjaer is under intense pressure to get United back where they were and he’s thought about himself before he thought about the player. Solskjaer has put himself above Marcus Rashford’s health.
“Now, one of their most promising and most important players is out and that has to come to the manager’s door.”
Despite admitting Rashford felt some discomfort prior to the injury suffered against Wolves, however, Solskjaer insisted that the stress fracture is a ‘new injury’ and not the result of playing with a previous problem.
“He’s not had that injury before,” Solskjaer said at a press conference on Tuesday.
“He complained a little bit after Burnley, he felt it the first time, and we managed him as well as we could then, he had some days off for treatment, taken off in games and suddenly this was a new injury. He didn’t have any injuries before then.”