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Van Gaal keen to protect Rashford

Louis van Gaal will continue to limit Marcus Rashford’s game time for Manchester United to make sure the teenage striker maintains his freshness.

Rashford has burst onto the scene at Old Trafford in the last two months with seven goals in 12 starts in all competitions, including vital strikes against Manchester City, Arsenal and Aston Villa.

However, he has been substituted in seven of his United appearances so far, as Van Gaal looks to protect his prized prospect.

“I have changed him [Rashford] after 70 minutes, I believe, and that is also to give him a little bit of rest,” the Dutchman coach told a news conference.

“He didn’t train the day after [the Villa game] and also the day after that he didn’t train.

“I want to keep him fresh because he is in the momentum of scoring and that is very important for him but also for the team.”

United have no new injury worries ahead of Crystal Palace’s visit on Wednesday, but will have Ander Herrera back after he missed the Aston Villa victory with a foot problem.

Luke Shaw has returned to light training in recent weeks, although Van Gaal says it is still too early for him to be considered as he continues to recover from a broken leg.

He added: “He [Shaw] is doing great. He’s training with the physio but he has to train with the football coach, and that hasn’t happened yet.”

Tue 19 Apr, 2016
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