The former Red Devils frontman has been blown away by the teenager’s impact at Old Trafford this season
Mason Greenwood “has the potential to surpass” Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial, according to Andy Cole, who thinks the Manchester United starlet is on Wayne Rooney’s level.
Greenwood is enjoying a breakout 2019-20 campaign at Old Trafford, during which he has netted 18 goals in 47 appearances across all competitions.
The 18-year-old’s latest effort came during a 3-0 win away at Aston Villa on July 9, which saw him become only the second teenager in United’s history to score in three consecutive games, emulating a feat achieved by Rooney in the early stages of his career.
Rashford and Martial have both scored four more goals than Greenwood over the course of the season, but most of his appearances came from the substitute’s bench before the Premier League was suspended due to the coronavirus crisis.
Since the June 17 resumption, the England international has been a fixture in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s line up, and Cole has talked up his talents ahead of the Red Devils’ penultimate game of the season against West Ham.
The former United striker believes Greenwood is currently on track to follow in the footsteps of the club’s all-time record goalscorer Rooney, and told The Athletic: “[He is] a special talent. He’ll get better and better.
“He scores with his left foot and right foot. He has the potential to surpass Marcus and Anthony.I’m not even sure if he’s that fast but 16 goals at 18 is incredible. When I was his age, I wasn’t close to Arsenal’s first team.
“This is Wazza (Wayne Rooney) level. He wasn’t even expected to be in the team this season.”
Cole went on to express his belief that Rashford still has plenty of room left to improve before reaching an elite level, while insisting that he should strive for the same level of consistency as Paris Saint-Germain superstar Kylian Mbappe.
“I like Marcus, but he’s not a centre-forward. He has to find consistency, which should come with age. Some players at his age already have it, like Mbappe,” he said.
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“When Marcus is on form, like at [Crystal] Palace the other night, he can get that kind of goal. He’s good running at people when he’s confident. I want to see him be a little bit braver, too. He’s six foot. He’s got the attributes to dominate in the air.”
He added: “When Man United pick the ball up in midfield, strikers have come short or go long. Nobody is making the run to get in behind. Martial has pace to burn, Marcus too, and it’s the main asset for Daniel James. Use it.”