Belfast Telegraph

Manchester United ace Rashford tackled by Norman Whiteside's wife over youngest player claim

Norman Whiteside playing for Manchester United against Liverpool in 1985
Norman Whiteside playing for Manchester United against Liverpool in 1985
Norman Whiteside
Marcus Rashford
George Best
Gareth Hanna

By Gareth Hanna

Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford has fallen foul of the wife of Northern Ireland legend Norman Whiteside.

The 22-year-old scored twice in a 4-0 league win over Norwich City at the weekend - his 63rd and 64th goals in what was his 200th club appearance.

Afterwards Rashford took to Twitter to proclaim his place as the third youngest player to reach the double century for the Old Trafford club.

Rashford said he was "beyond proud" to reach the landmark after Ryan Giggs and the great George Best.

The news, added to his goalscoring exploits at Old Trafford on Saturday, made for the "perfect day", he added.

But he was then tackled by Denise Whiteside on Sunday afternoon.

She noted the club's statisticians managed to forget the man who deserves to take the very top step - her husband.

The United hero (54) reached the 200 mark at the age of 21 years and four months, three months ahead of Bestie, five younger than Giggs and a full 10 clear of Rashford.

"Think my hubby was younger than all three of you in actual fact," Denise tweeted.

Rashford was quick to doff his cap to the youngest man ever to play in the World Cup finals, with a Norman Whiteside "appreciation tweet". "Never to be overlooked," added the ace.

Taking the flak was United's official app editor Mark Froggatt, who Denise had asked, on behalf of her husband, to do his homework.

"Apologies to you and Norm," said Froggatt. "The research quoted is incorrectly missing him from the list. I will update accordingly. Hope you're having a nice weekend."

The exchange did lead to an outpouring of support for Norman, who is also the youngest player to score in League Cup and FA Cup finals, both records reached during the 1982/83 season.

Whiteside had, the previous summer, taken Pele's World Cup record when he played for Northern Ireland against Yugoslavia aged only 17 years and 41 days. His exploits in Spain convinced United manager Ron Atkinson to make the teenager a regular starter the following campaign.

He scored in the League Cup final aged 17 years and 323 days, although could not help his side avoid a 2-1 defeat to Liverpool.

Whiteside also grabbed the FA Cup final record, scoring aged 18 years and 18 days in a 4-0 replay victory over Brighton.

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