Why it’s time for Manchester United to offload Anthony Martial

According to Eurosport (h/t Manchester Evening News), Anthony Martial has been linked with an exit from Manchester United in the summer. The forward hasn’t enjoyed a great start to the season after hitting good numbers last season.

Despite Solskjaer backing the forward on many occasions, the report suggests that United’s forward line could be changed over the summer and Martial could depart.

Profile

Martial, 25, came through the ranks of Lyon’s youth system and moved to Monaco in 2013. After 70 appearances for the French outfit, he was signed by Manchester United in September 2015 and scored on his debut in the Premier League against Liverpool.

Since then, the £250k-a-week Frenchman has gone on to make 223 appearances for the Red Devils, racking up 73 goals and 43 assists. Except for the Premier League title, he has won the other domestic titles once each in England. He has established himself as a key member under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. A full international, Martial has featured 20 times for the French national team.

Manchester United forward Anthony Martial celebrates after scoring on his debut against Liverpool. (Getty Images)
Manchester United forward Anthony Martial celebrates after scoring on his debut against Liverpool. (Getty Images)

Manchester United should let go of Martial

It’s no secret that Anthony Martial has blown hot and cold since making the switch to Old Trafford. He has come a long way since scoring that debut goal against Liverpool that left the Reds bamboozled. On occasions, he has been United’s top scorer while on others, he has struggled to even reach double figures.

He has been given opportunities at left-wing and even in his favoured centre-forward position. The results varied from season to season. Martial has very good dribbling skills but his overall goalscoring leaves a lot to be desired. He is not a bad finisher by any means. In fact, he is a very cold blooded clinical finisher but only on rare occasions.

Martial has a lack of predatory instincts that define classic No.9s or ‘fox-in-the-box’ strikers. He often fluffs those half chances that can turn the tide in his team’s favour. Another thing is his inability to hold up play for other players to get into position. These are very basic requirements for a striker.

Anthony Martial (R) in action against Juventus (Getty Images)
Anthony Martial (R) in action against Juventus (Getty Images)

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With Rashford showing better form as a striker and even Greenwood more suited to a central role, it is understandable that the club’s forward line can still function without Martial.

He has been given ample time and chances and he bagged a decent haul last season. With Martial still at young age, Manchester United should look to replace him with a more prolific option. United genuinely need a striker who can get them those 25-30 goals in a season single-handedly. Clearly, Martial cannot do that for them.

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