One of the most glaringly obvious opportunities to every big football club is still escaping the serious attention that it needs.
Clubs spend millions on footballers in every transfer window. In fact that figure is now looking like consistently going into the billions.
However, what happens when that player, that was purchased for £50million doesn't perform? Often it's only a matter of time before the club cuts their losses and sells the player for many £millions less than they paid for the player.
The video above underlines why clubs need to be taking mental performance in the game much more seriously.
Marcus is playing incredibly well right now.
What do you think his value is in the transfer market right this second?
Now I am going to hazard a guess that the amount that you, and the whole footballing world values Marcus at (right now) has shot back up to where it was a few seasons ago.
Last season, his performances were not brilliant. They certainly were not to his levels he’s at right now. As a consequence of this his value would have gone down.
In fact if we look on Transfermakt his value dropped a staggering £30 million in less than a year from December 2021. Although it hasn't started to go back up yet, if Marcus continues the way he's playing, it will.
Transfermarkt is only an estimation and it isn't like Manchester United are looking to sell anyway. However, what it does show is that performances of players make a substantial difference to their value and subsequently the value of the assets of a football club.
From a business perspective for Manchester United and every other club, it is an obvious statement to say that financially it is extremely important for players to perform well.
If we take injuries aside, the huge and overwhelming majority of what causes Marcus Rashford to perform better is down to his brain. That mental side of his game.
The brain is what controls performances.
His ability didn’t drop and then go back up. I know he has been working on various aspects of his game to improve them. So his ability will have increased. However, this improvement in his ability would not warrant the massive improvement in performances that we are seeing. Not on their own.
The brain is EVERYTHING when it comes to performance.
When you step out on to that pitch, whether or not you are able to perform to the upper levels of your ability is all about your brain.
This isn’t to the extreme either. We aren't saying a player has mental health issues or is having a mental breakdown. The difference between performing well, or performing terribly can be very subtle changes in approach, what a players focusing on and other factors.
Often it is just a matter of getting a players brain to work for them, rather than against them, as many natural reactions that we have as human being will cause issues and stop us performing to our best.
Although we often talk about 'mental' performance, all of these changes actually have a physical response in the body and brain.
Not getting this right can mean that a player is physically unable to perform to his best. Every bit of physical brilliance can disappear from a players game and often they don’t even realise why.
We aren’t born with a user guide to the brain and often our natural reaction reactions and responses to life events, events on the football pitch, things happening on the training pitch are negative.
Our natural responses can then cause the wrong parts of the brain to take control. This then also causes the physical release of chemicals in the body and brain that can make it physically impossible to play at your best.
If a player isn’t performing to his capabilities, there is one major overarching thing that will get a player back to performing, getting his brain working for him consistently.
Most of the time the problem is through no fault of the player whatsoever. They want to be motivated, they want to perform their best, however they just don’t know how to get the right parts of the brain in control to play to do this.
Ultimately, it really is brilliant to see Marcus Rashford playing so well again. Whether he’s working with someone, or he’s just managed to figure some things out for himself, clubs need to be paying much more attention to this.
Every club needs every one of their players becoming as valuable as possible and then either maintaining or increasing this value.
Its obviously great for the player and the outcomes of the team on the football pitch.
However, where clubs are going to see the even more value in this is from a business perspective and the financial bottom line.