Marcus Rashford Manchester United City 071219Getty

Rashford matches personal-best goal return with VAR-awarded penalty in Manchester derby

Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford has matched his personal-best goal return of 13 in just 21 appearances in 2019-20, with a VAR-awarded penalty allowing him to convert on derby day.

The Red Devils burst out of the blocks against City at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday.

They could already have been in front by the time video technology gifted Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side an opportunity to open the scoring from the spot.

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Rashford went down in the area under a challenge from Bernardo Silva, but play was initially waved on.

That decision was reversed by VAR, with it clear that an England international frontman had been tripped by a clumsy tackle.

United have not boasted the best of records from 12 yards in recent times, but Rashford made no mistake as he calmly slotted into the bottom corner - with City keeper Ederson going the wrong way.

The 22-year-old has enjoyed meetings with the Blues in the past and has now equalled his best return as a senior star with United.

He has taken his haul for the current campaign to 13 across all competitions, with that mark hit by December 7.

United will be hoping that there are many more goals from Rashford to come.

He has been tipped for big things since bursting onto the scene under Louis van Gaal as an exciting teenager.

The end product in his game has been questioned at times, with a succession of managers asking him to fill a wide attacking role.

Solskjaer is managing to get consistency out of a player whose ability has never been in question.

Rashford is enjoying a stunning purple patch at present, with both club and country.

He headed into derby day boasting 12 goals across his previous 13 appearances for United and England.

Just 23 minutes were required against City to extend that remarkable run.

Things could have been even better for Rashford as well, given that he had seen sights of goal before finding the target and struck the crossbar with a curling effort moments later.

Anthony Martial did double United’s lead before the half-time whistle at the Etihad, with Pep Guardiola’s defending Premier League champions once again paying the price for struggles at the back which have hampered their cause throughout 2019-20.