James opens up on partnership with Rashford as he aims to help boost Man Utd striker's goal tally

Marcus Rashford Daniel James Man Utd
The Welshman has revealed that he is working hard on his relationship with the "fantastic" England international on the training ground

Manchester United winger Daniel James has hailed Marcus Rashford as a "great player" and expressed a desire to improve his understanding with the in-form striker on the pitch.

James completed a £15 million ($19m) move from Swansea City to Old Trafford on June 12, after impressing for the Championship outfit throughout the 2018-19 campaign.

The 22-year-old has adapted to his new surroundings in Manchester quickly, emerging as a key member of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side at the start of the new season.

James has also struck up an effective partnership with Rashford, who is United's leading scorer with seven to his name from 13 Premier League appearances.

The England star has benefitted greatly from James' pinpoint crossing ability in recent weeks, with the former Swansea winger assisting his new team-mate on three occasions already.

Ahead of Aston Villa's arrival at Old Trafford on Sunday, James has opened up on his developing relationship with Rashford, revealing the work being put in on the training ground to improve each other's output.

“Yeah, Marcus is obviously a great player to play with,” James told MUTV. “The abilities he has are fantastic and he’s getting better every game.

“Something we work on in training is the movement and things like that and obviously, for me, getting out wide and [in] those positions I want to find him as much as I can, to get him goals and for him to assist me as well.

“That’s something we talk about every day, to improve each other’s game.”

While recalling the key role he played in Rashford's goals against Liverpool, Norwich and Sheffield United, James added: "I think in those situations, over time you get better obviously because you do it in training. That’s something we do in training all the time.

“Obviously it’s going to be different balls and you’re going to be in different areas but [last Sunday] for me, the right ball was to pull it back.

“I saw him in the corner of my eye and I think if I went for goal, it wouldn’t have been a goal. I think over time I’m learning every game to be in those situations and get those assists.”

United must beat Villa to keep their hopes of a top-four finish alive, with Chelsea already nine points ahead of them in the final Champions League spot.

However, James expects a tough challenge from the Premier League new-boys, who will be high on confidence after securing a vital home win over Newcastle on Monday.

Article continues below

“I think this season they’ve really surprised people,” James continued. “I played against them last season [in the Championship and FA Cup].

"They’re a very good team and they’ve still got a lot of the players they had last season, but obviously they’ve added a lot of good players as well.

“They’ve come from a good win on Monday night and we’re preparing hard for it. They’ve got great qualities and that’s something we’re going to look at and we’ll try and get a stamp on it.”