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'Don't try to copy!' - Van Persie offers advice to Rashford amid Ronaldo comparisons

4:05 PM GMT+4 01/01/2020
Marcus Rashford Robin van Persie Cristiano Ronaldo
A former Old Trafford favourite has urged the England striker to stick to his own unique style and learn from his peers rather than mimic them

Robin van Persie has advised Marcus Rashford against trying to copy anyone else, amid comparisons between the 22-year-old and Juventus superstar Cristiano Ronaldo.

Rashford is currently enjoying his best season yet at Old Trafford, with 16 goals to his name from 26 appearances across all competitions.

The England international has added a clinical edge to his game while displaying maturity on and off the pitch, standing out in a squad still negotiating its way through of a difficult transitional period.

Rashford has received plenty of praise for his recent performances, not least from his manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who insists that the attacker has the potential to become a "top, top player".

Solskjaer has even mentioned Rashford in the same breath as United legend Ronaldo , who won three Premier League titles and the Champions League during his time in Manchester.

Van Persie has, however, warned the Red Devils talisman not to try and be "someone else", encouraging him to learn what he can from the best players in the game without imitating their style.

"I've seen so many players who want to be someone else, it doesn't work," the ex-United forward told Rashford during a feature interview for BT Sport .

"If you can learn bits and pieces, great. But don't try to emulate or copy people."

Van Persie went on to recall watching Dennis Bergkamp in training during his time at Arsenal and being inspired to improve his all-round game by a fellow Dutchman's brilliance on the ball.

He added: "With Dennis for example, I saw him doing one session where he did a passing drill with the younger players. He didn't make one mistake in 45 minutes, whereas I'd make 50 mistakes, sloppy mistakes.

"I had to change myself, the target was to be a top player. So along the way, you learn bits and pieces."

Rashford will be back in action with United when they take in a trip to Emirates Stadium to face Arsenal on New Year's Day.

A win could see Solskjaer's men close the gap on fourth-placed Chelsea, who are due to take on Brighton at the Amex Stadium in the day's early kick-off.

The Red Devils bounced back from a defeat at Watford on December 22 by beating Newcastle and Burnley, which helped ease pressure on Solskjaer, who has faced plenty of criticism this season.

Rashford thinks the Norwegian boss has the team heading in the right direction, with a focus on sticking to the club's core values in order to rediscover past glories.

When discussing United's current position with Van Persie, Rashford said: "With Ole, he understands where the club is right now, but he doesn't want us to lose the United DNA and identity."

After their latest Premier League outing, United will turn their attention to a third-round FA Cup tie against Wolves at Molineux on January 4.