The striker says he would have pushed through the pain barrier to join up with the rest of the England squad at the European Championship
Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford has conceded that he wouldn’t have been ‘100 per cent’ fit for the European Championship, while providing a positive update on his recovery from injury in self-isolation.
Rashford had 19 goals in 31 appearances across all competitions to his name for United in 2019-20 before being sidelined with a back fracture in January.
The 22-year-old was initially expected to be out for three months, but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer later revealed that it was unclear whether he would return to action before the end of the season.
The issue also left Rashford’s participation in this summer’s European Championship in doubt, before the tournament was pushed back a year due the coronavirus pandemic.
The Premier League has been on hiatus since March 13, and it is not yet known when or if it will be safe for players and staff to return to work over the summer.
Rashford has been forced to keep up with his rehabilitation programme from home in recent weeks, with the United Kingdom currently in a state of lockdown as the fight to contain the spread of Covid-19 continues.
The England international says he originally hoped to be back on the pitch by April, but admits he wasn’t confident about being physically ready to join up with Gareth Southgate’s squad.
“Yeah, you know, for me, I was probably going to go back with the team towards the middle or end of April,” Rashford told United’s official podcast. “But that would have been a push, obviously, because I didn’t want to miss the summer.
“I doubt I would have been 100 per cent fit going into that tournament, or even finishing off the season, but that’s what we were aiming for.
“Obviously, since then, a lot’s happened with this virus so, for my body really, it’s been good to give it its full duration to rest.”
When asked how he has been progressing in self-isolation as he continues down the comeback trail, Rashford replied: “Yeah, it’s good. Obviously, I need to step it up a little bit now, but it’s difficult to do with not being in the training ground.
“I’ve just added a few bits and pieces – I’m pushing myself on the bike, and doing more core work and upper body, so just day-by-day really, taking it slow.
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“It’s difficult. Obviously you can train at the training ground every day and that’s the peak of your fitness. To try to emulate that at home, it’s almost impossible.
“Everyone’s just trying to get as close as they can to that. Some of the lads have been out running every day and have programmes from the club. But even doing that, running [5km or 6km], maybe it’s more than what you’d run in the training session, but it’s not the same spike in intensity. So it’s difficult to try to mirror that.
“You’ve just got to try to do as best as you can. You know, in yourself, when you’re as fit as you can be and, during this time, it’s definitely tough.”