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Romelu Lukaku and Marcus Rashford are a ‘joy to watch’, says Daley Blind

Manchester United defender Daley Blind has spoken to Sky Sports of his joy at watching both Marcus Rashford and Romelu Lukaku this season. United signed Lukaku from Everton at the start of the summer in a £75 million deal, which could rise to £90 million, snatching the player from the arms of Chelsea with the Belgian striker expected to re-sign for his former club, instead choosing his former manager, Jose Mourinho over Premier League champion Antonio Conte. After scoring 25 goals in the Premier League last season, Lukaku has settled in at United seamlessly looking like a player who has been at the club for a number of years.

Marcus Rashford is less than two years into his United career, announcing himself on his debut against Midtjylland in the UEFA Europa League with a brace in the 2015/16 season, doing the same days later in the Premier League against Arsenal, rising from the U18 and U21’s at the time, into the first team and not looking back. This season has been great for Rashford, scoring three goals in all competitions so far, setting up Lukaku for his first United goal against West Ham United in the Red Devils’ Premier League opener almost a month ago. Between them, Lukaku and Rashford have scored seven goals between them in the league alone, nine in all competitions, which is a great start to the new season.

The Dutchman, who signed for United on deadline day in 2014, spoke exclusively to Sky Sports about the deadly due, saying:

“It’s a joy to watch them in front of me when I play.

“Sometimes you have to take a moment and enjoy the action if they make something happen. It’s a pleasure to play with talent like that.”

Lukaku has scored six goals in six matches so far this season, including the 2-1 defeat to Real Madrid in the UEFA Super Cup, four of those coming in the opening four Premier League matches; a brace against West Ham, one against Swansea City – both matches being 4-0 victories for United, his fourth in the league in the 2-2 draw away to Stoke City. Lukaku also scored on his debut in the Champions League, scoring the second goal in the 3-0 victory over FC Basel on Tuesday evening. It is not just for United that Lukaku is shining for, also scoring four goals for Belgium during the international break, a hat-trick against Gibraltar and a single goal against Greece. United will be challenging for the Premier League title this season and Lukaku’s goals could be the foundation to that. Blind continued by saying:

“Very important. He is already important for us.

“But it’s not just him, it’s the team. We are competing at the top of the Premier League now and that is where we want to be.

“We have to be aware that we have to give it every time in every game to stay there – that is up to us.

“Winning the title is always the aim at Manchester United, you want to win trophies. Last year we win trophies, the year before we won trophies.

“In England, the Premier League is the thing I am missing, so maybe (we can win), that’s what we fight for.”

This Sunday, United play their fifth match in the Premier League, in a month which would see seven matches played in three competitions; Premier League, UEFA Champions League, and the Carabao Cup, with United needing rotation throughout the month. Everton will be the visitors to the Theatre of Dreams come 16:00 BST on Sunday afternoon and the return of former United captain, Wayne Rooney. Blind had his say about the club’s top scorer leaving in the summer, suggesting his only motivation, playing more matches as the reason for his departure from the Old Trafford club. Blind concluded by saying:

“He went to play more (at Everton) than he did (at United).

“I think this is the best thing for him, Everton is his home after his United home.

“He is still a great player and personality and I am lucky to have played with him. He will get a great reception, it has to be.”

United will have a tough match on their hands at the Theatre of Dreams on Sunday as Everton are not always a push over. The last few fixtures between the two clubs have been tough matches, the last being played at Goodison Park with Everton scoring a late penalty to draw the game, which should have been an important victory for United. This season though, Everton are a different club. Big spenders in the transfer window, based on their previous outlays, but not really capitalising anything with manager Ronald Koeman not having a great time after back-to-back 3-0 defeats to Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League and Atalanta in the UEFA Europa League, the competition won by United last season earning them a place in the group stages in the UEFA Champions League, nearly two years after their last match in the elite European competition.

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