Rasmus Højlund appears to be the real deal. Unfortunately this is not massively apparent at present as none of his so-called providers are the real deal.
Whenever Marcus Rashford passes the ball it is either a short one back towards his own goal or a forced one whereby, unless he passes or crosses, then the ball goes out of play. Rashford’s go-to tactics include blazing shots miles wide or straight at the opposing defender with the occasional variant being tamely giving away possession.
Antony is no better and is very much a one-trick pony. Playing on the right he will cut in and try to shoot with his left foot. The recent results of this tactic have all been shots which, for all we know, are still travelling in an upwards trajectory! His alternative, the right foot, is only good in helping him stand up. He also prefers to lose the ball before taking the better option of passing it.
Of the youngsters only Alejandro Garnacho is really getting game time and, despite his obvious potential, is still not able to differentiate between situations requiring a cross, a shot or a pass. This results in him scoring the occasional spectacular goal but rarely anything else.
Examples of this lack of service were even seen when Højlund scored his latest two goals in Denmark. His first was a cross/pass from Scott McTominay, (not usually noted for his assists and actually one of the best finishers at the club), with his second coming from a Garnacho shot which the keeper could only parry out to him, (Garnacho should have passed to Højlund who was in a much better position).
On the bench sits Facundo Pellistri, a player good enough for his national team, Uruguay, but not deemed good enough to start before the one-trick pony or the very average Rashford. Hopefully his time will come soon.
Sitting on another bench, probably in a park somewhere in the South Manchester area, is Jadon Sancho. Problematical at City, who let him go to Dortmund so he could still be problematical but in a different country, he has found his way, amazingly, to United where guess what? Yep, he’s problematical. He ranks up there with other galactic signings like Angel Di Maria, Alexis Sanchéz and Alan Brazil.
So Højlund must soldier on in the often vain hope that one of the aforementioned wingers actually crosses the ball for him, (they seem to overlook completely the fact that he is six feet three and would win a few headers), or passes it to him rather than greedily shooting at every opportunity.
Alternatively, he can hope that one of the midfielders will put something on a plate for him. Casemiro, Eriksen, Fernandes and Amrabat are all capable yet seem reticent to look for the through balls he can chase.
He must cast an envious glance at Erling Haaland occasionally and turn a pale shade of green when he sees the supply line at City. Phil Foden, Jack Grealish, Kevin De Bruyne, Rodri, Jeremy Doku and Bernardo Silva are just a few of the creators who have City and Haaland at the top of the goalscoring charts this season.
If Sir Jim Ratcliffe completes his takeover of the football side of things then players like Antony and Sancho may, hopefully, find their days numbered. At present it may be asking a little too much for Rashford to be added to this list although there is no doubt he should be!