Thought we might be moving on from Sunday? No chance. Not while the intrepid Mail hacks are spotting Marcus Rashford leaving his house rather than spending his days alone in the dark reflecting on what he’s done.
Turns out 48 hours was the limit for what could be wrung out of Bruno Fernandes being a bit of a prick, but that doesn’t mean the papers are quite ready to move on from Manchester United losing 7-0 to Liverpool, because Manchester United losing 7-0 to Liverpool is in fairness quite a thing.
So with the Bruno route exhausted, MailOnline have looked around for fresh meat and settled entirely coincidentally on Marcus Rashford, a Manchester United player with whom they have no previous issues whatsoever.
Unfortunately, Rashford was not a conspicuous bed-shitter on Sunday afternoon. Don’t worry, though. The daft sod has only gone and left his house! And driven a car that he owns! To a shop! And all this ‘just two days’ after United’s afternoon of shame in Liverpool! What an absolute prick.
The JUST DAYS format is a common yet irredeemably weird genre of ‘football’ ‘journalism’ and is combined here with the classic trope of pointing out that millionaire footballers own expensive things. There’s no point pretending this particular gambit isn’t predominantly used against black footballers, and especially bolshy gobshite black footballers who think children shouldn’t starve.
So there’s nothing much new about this specific Mail hit job, but we’re struggling to think of one that more thoroughly ticks all the boxes.
As with all MailOnline efforts, quite literally the entire story is contained within the wildly long headline and bullet points that follow.
‘Retail therapy, Marcus? Manchester United star Rashford is spotted out shopping in his £280k McLaren 765LT – two days after his side’s humiliating 7-0 defeat by Liverpool – as England forward takes trip to jewellers’
The cost of the car? Check. The arbitrarily unacceptable timeframe following a defeat? Check.
That is literally the entire content of the story, so the bullet points just repeat the same details just in case any of the slower Mail readers haven’t yet worked out precisely what is supposed to be making them angry:
- Marcus Rashford was spotted out in Cheshire with his £280,000 McLaren 765LT
- The forward visited a jewellers two days after his side’s 7-0 defeat to Liverpool
- The 25-year-old was unable to get on the scoresheet at Anfield on Sunday
HIS CAR IS VERY EXPENSIVE AND JUST TWO DAYS EARLIER HE FAILED TO SCORE AND HIS TEAM LOST. BE ANGRY.
Into the story we go. Fair warning, this is going to be one of those line-by-line Mediawatches because every single bit of this story is f***ing mental.
‘Manchester United star Marcus Rashford was spotted out and about in Cheshire on Tuesday, just two days after his side’s 7-0 defeat to Liverpool.’
Disappointing to see the McLaren 765LT, which costs £280,000, not getting a mention in the intro here. Standards, MailOnline. Standards.
‘The England international played 85 minutes of the match at Anfield on Sunday, as the Red Devils were dealt a brutal Premier League loss against their rivals.
‘And, following the defeat, the 25-year-old decided to hit the town and do some shopping before hopping back into his McLaren 765LT.’
Phew, there it is. No price tag, though? And ‘following the defeat’ is doing a bit of work here, isn’t it? It was two days later. He didn’t nip in on his way home from Anfield. How long precisely is he supposed to stay sat at home in a darkened room flagellating himself? Or is there a car or shop that would be deemed acceptable? Would it be okay if he’d nipped to Tesco in a Sportage? Or would he then be accused of being cheap? Honestly, it’s a fine line these footballers have to tread to avoid the Mail’s wrath.
Maybe there’s a sliding scale of acceptable cars and passage of time following a defeat. Perhaps players should be issued with a spreadsheet. Lose narrowly to Arsenal? You can take the Land Rover out three days later. A 7-0 spangling at Anfield? Sorry, that’s five days minimum and then only a 63-plate Vauxhall Corsa.
‘Rashford was spotted by photographers entering jewellery shop Prestons – which specials in luxury watches – before being seen hopping back into his ride.
‘The forward sported a casual look and had a sombre expression on his face as he quickly entered his £280,000 sports car.’
Buying himself a fancy watch, was he? Well we don’t know, but probably! Maybe! Might have been a gift! But JUST DAYS after losing to Liverpool? He really is a disgrace. Still, at least we’ve got a reminder of the retail price of that McLaren 765LT. We were starting to forget.
Best part here, though, is ‘had a sombre expression on his face’ because you just know the Mail are pure gutted about that part. You just know they’ll have combed through every photo by every creepy paparazzo involved absolutely desperate to find just one single frame where Rashford even looked like he might be thinking about smiling JUST TWO DAYS after losing to Liverpool.
‘The forward decided to hit the shops of Cheshire just two days after the humiliating defeat at Anfield, where Erik ten Hag’s side were beaten 7-0.’
At this point, the article is just pictures of a man and a car and endless repetition of the same four or five pieces of information. Cheshire. Just two days. 7-0. McLaren 765LT. £280,000.
‘After the match, a number of Rashford’s team-mates – such as captain Bruno Fernandes – were slammed for their body language and attitude in the game.’
But not Rashford, so that’s irrelevant.
‘It was also suggested that Liverpool’s Uruguayan forward [Darwin] Nunez mocked Rashford’s trademark celebration after scoring against the Red Devils on Sunday.
‘As he wheeled away to celebrate his powerful header, the Uruguayan put his index finger to the side of his head – something that Rashford has become synonymous with.’
This bit is just plain nuts. They know it’s nuts, because it’s couched in such cowardly terms – ‘It was also suggested that…’
First, let’s not pretend Marcus Rashford is the first human to ever point his finger to his head. But sure, it’s a celebration Rashford has started to use, in reference to ‘shutting out outside noise being mentally tough’ as the Mail themselves grudgingly later acknowledge.
Darwin Nunez has, it’s fair to say, had a bit of outside noise to deal with during his first season in English football. It seems reasonable he might adopt that celebration. It seems far less likely that he decided to mock Rashford.
Or were Novak Djokovic, Jofra Archer, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka – all of whom have used the celebration recently – also mocking Rashford? It’s a quite baffling collection of haters.
We hope that Rashford is able to see this particular outside noise from the Mail for what it is and ignore it.
But we don’t have to do that, and nor do we have to ignore the very obvious reason why it’s Rashford the Mail have gone for, or why they’ve left certain things unsaid. They’re despicably clever at this game and know exactly what they’re doing in leading their readers to the desired conclusion without ever having to say it out loud themselves.
And sure enough, the ‘best rated’ reader comment with 900 upvotes and counting duly says the quiet part loud: ‘I wonder how many school dinners he could have bought for the price of that car.’
Despicable job despicably done.
Still, though. Rashford did park on double yellows which is definitely the worst extra-curricular activity a Manchester-based footballer has been up to recently.
It’s a pretty open secret that Manchester United need to sign a striker this summer, so we’re all going to have to get used to this sort of stuff.
‘Erik ten Hag receives boost as top Man Utd transfer target admits ‘dream’ move’ teases the headline from the Daily Mirror.
Now we’ve all played the game long enough to know there are a few things that could be going on here. We’ll start with the fact the ‘top Man Utd transfer target’ here is Victor Osimhen, and that seems fair enough. He will be a top summer target for Manchester United but also, quite importantly, a lot of other clubs. So if he’s singled out United as a dream move, that really is good news.
Gah, you already know what he actually said. This isn’t your first Mediawatch. You already know hoe many times he mentioned Manchester United.
“I’m working so hard to make sure that I achieve my dream of playing in the Premier League someday.”
Sounds a bit like he’s given 20 Premier League managers a boost there. But there’s also that ‘someday’ in there. Bear in mind that this quote is specifically a boost for Erik Ten Hag, who needs a striker this summer.
Because Osimhen also said:
“I think playing in one of the top five leagues in the world is an amazing feeling for me. A lot of people worldwide consider the Premier League as the best and the strongest league but now I’m in one of the best leagues in the world which is the Italian Serie A.”
“It’s a process and I just want to keep on this momentum and continue to do well.”
The man is practically parading round Naples in a United shirt at this point. Let’s just hope he doesn’t buy any fancy supercars once he gets here.