Manchester United manager David Moyes believes Danny Welbeck can score 20 goals this season, after setting his England striker an ambitious target heading into the second half of the season.
Welbeck took his tally with United to seven for the campaign as he fired the only goal of the game in the victory against Norwich on Saturday and Moyes believes his 23-year-old charge can plug the gap if Robin van Persie and Wayne Rooney continue to suffering with injury problems.
"With the second half of the season to go, he should be certainly looking to score 20 goals," said Moyes of a striker who has often been criticised for his lack of scoring power.
"We need him to do that because when you don’t have Wayne [Rooney] and you don’t have Robin [van Persie], then you need people to step up to the mark. In quite a few of the games recently he has done that for us.
"We have said to him we are trying to keep his finishing up. I think he can keep his efforts up, his levels up even better. I think Danny has responded, he is saying ‘hey this is quite good I am beginning to score some goals and getting recognised for that as well’.
"He got one goal last year and now he is on seven for this season. It could be better, but you have got to say it is going in the right direction."
Moyes believes his side’s recent good run in the absence of Van Persie has proved that United are not overly reliant on the input of the Dutch marksman who led their successful title charge last season.
"I don’t think at Manchester United you have only two players to do the jobs [Rooney and Van Persie]. You have got to have more, like in these games you would never be able to cope when you pick up injuries," he added.
"I see it more as a squad rather than any one. Chichirato [Javier Hernandez] is part of that, as is he a great goalscorer too."
Moyes remains hopeful Rooney can shake off the groin injury that has been troubling him in recent weeks to take to the field against Tottenham on New Year’s Day, while Van Persie has also returned to light training, with the United manager saying he is "not too far away" from a first team return.