Manchester United and England captain Wayne Rooney believes Marcus Rashford can become a "superstar" for club and country. The 18-year-old has risen from obscurity since making his United debut in February – and Rooney expects Rashford's stock to soar further in coming years.
Rashford has been recalled to the senior England squad for their World Cup qualifier against Malta on Saturday (8 October) and Rooney is excited by the teenager's potential.
"I think Marcus is doing fantastic," he said, according to ESPN. "He is probably one of the most exciting players in world football at the minute. I am sure if he keeps working hard and developing he'll be a superstar in years to come."
Earlier this season, Rashford scored a hat-trick for England under-21s in their one-sided demolition of Norway in Colchester. Rooney thinks that Rashford's eye-catching performance for the under-21 side, allied to his impressive displays for United, mean he merits a place in the senior squad.
"It's important with exciting young players that they get the rewards they deserve and I think he deserves it," Rooney said of his United teammate.
"He's been fantastic since he got into the Manchester United squad and he's carried that on again this season so he fully deserves his chance to be in the squad and play. I'm sure if he does that he will take his opportunity."
Rashford worked under the now-interim England boss Gareth Southgate during his one-off appearance for the under-21s. After the United youngster's stellar performance, the manager spoke in glowing terms about Rashford's attitude.
"He was outstanding for us last month, he's starting for Manchester United," Southgate said. "I think you can all see his ability and the effect he's had on games, but it's his maturity around the camp – he was still the youngest in the under-21 squad."