Rashford reveals Ronaldo inspiration ahead of Brazil game

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"That's why I've grown up watching so much of him and his games", Rashford said.

"I think the word for these two players is exciting". When you do that, that's when you play your best football.

Speaking before England host Brazil in a friendly at Wembley on Tuesday, Rashford said he was a five-year-old spectator at Old Trafford when Real knocked United out 6-5 on aggregate in the quarter-finals.After the game, he and his brother Dwaine began scouring YouTube for clips of the Brazilian. It was in 2003 and scored a hat trick.

"No matter where he was playing, he played free and went out there and expressed himself", Rashford added.

But would United fans, if they were being brutally honest, swap Rashford with any of the aforementioned starlets or any other of the world's top players?

Rashford, who has scored 26 goals in his first 89 appearances for the Red Devils, is now widely regarded as one of the most promising young forwards in European football.

The transition from watching to playing has been seamless for Rashford. Since the previous worldwide break last month, Rashford has started only four of United's seven games and on one of those occasions was deployed in an unfamiliar wide-left role, while on the other three he was tasked with what is nowadays the unusual responsibility of operating in a two-man attack. It was one of the greatest individual performances by a foreign star in England.

It was the main reason that Rashford watched him so much during his youth.

Rashford lined up alongside Romelu Lukaku that afternoon and it bodes well for the player's prospects at worldwide level that he appears comfortable in a two-man frontline. No wonder Rashford will indeed be living the dream when he faces the five-time world champions Brazil tonight.

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". For Marcus Rashford, praise from Brazil legend Ronaldo has been the stuff of fantasy.

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