Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has defended the amount of gametime Marcus Rashford has received under his management. The 20-year-old scored for England during the recent internationals against both Spain and Switzerland and this had brought criticism over Mourinho’s handling of him at Old Trafford.

However, speaking ahead of the Watford game, Mourinho appeared to counteract the criticism by citing that Rashford has played more first-team football with United when compared to other graduates at their respective clubs, he said: “People speaking about his minutes, they are a bit confused. Marcus Rashford is not [Liverpool striker] Dominic Solanke. He’s not [Chelsea midfielder] Ruben Loftus-Cheek. He’s not [Everton forward] Dominic Calvert-Lewin. He’s Marcus Rashford, Manchester United player, with an incredible number of appearances and an incredible number of minutes played at the highest level in the best possible competitions.”

Rashford looked lively with his movement for the Three Lions during the international break and there remains the room for improvement after he missed a couple of clear-cut chances against Spain which could have quite easily handed them a victory. Meanwhile, the forward has managed just one start for the Red Devils since the beginning of the league campaign and he may now have to adjust to Champions League football for the forthcoming weeks after receiving a straight red card against Burnley which has now banned him for three domestic games.

Elsewhere, United managed to cease their run of back-to-back defeats after they won comfortably at Burnley (2-0) before the international break but they need to be still wary of another setback with Watford not the easiest of opposition to tackle. At present, the Hornets are one of three clubs with the perfect start to the season and it could be noted that the club have won seven of their 10 league games at home since Javi Gracia took charge in January.