This won’t be the first time that TFF has demonstrated dismay at the merest hint of Anthony Martial’s departure from Manchester United.
Martial clearly hasn’t done all the things that manager Jose Mourinho has asked of him during his sporadic minutes on the pitch under the tenure of the Portuguese.
But neither has Mourinho hitherto delivered on his apparent understanding of what Manchester United expected of him as a manager. Early in his United career (November 2016) he said:
“I think we are in the right direction, we played very well and that makes me happy,” Mourinho said. “One of the things I proposed to myself was to come to a club like Manchester United and play the kind of football that people want. It’s Man U tradition. I’m really happy with that.
“That’s our way of playing. Every manager has his ideas. The players can help or not help to make a certain style of play. That’s what we propose at United. I’ve never had a team with so much possession, so much creation, so many chances, but I never had a team with so many draws.
“I want this beautiful team to win more matches. We need to score more goals like this. Playing beautiful attacking football – that is something the fans like – but we need results. So goals plus performance means the real happiness.”
Martial has too often been seen playing as an auxiliary full back in Mourinho’s uber defensive formations over the last two years. Where Liverpool and Manchester City leave their lethal front three on the half way line, in readiness for counter attacks, the likes of Martial, Rashford and Sanchez are asked to track back constantly.
At 22 Martial must be given minutes to iron the mistakes out of his game. The hope, when Alexis Sanchez arrived, was that Martial would remain in the eleven. But he’s increasingly found himself on the bench. It’s a sorry state of affairs for such a wonderful talent who seems to conform to the best Manchester United traditions.
British media outlet, The Daily Mail, reported this week:
Tottenham step up their pursuit of Anthony Martial as they prepare talks with Manchester United officials
At 22 Martial has ten years of top class football in the tank and it seems like complete madness to let him go. This could be a worse mistake than the departures of Salah and De Bruyne from Chelsea. They too are free spirited, attacking players who have become two of the best in the world but didn’t appear to fit the Mourinho mould. How good would Chelsea be now if they still had those two?
Let’s hope, for Manchester United’s sake that they hold on to the player. Because Tottenham would be getting a world class star in waiting.
Here are some of Anthony Martial’s best moments for the club, including that debut against Liverpool at Old Trafford which seemed certain to make him a legend at the club.
Manchester United fans: is it time to let Martial go to Tottenham or would this be a monumentally bad transfer mistake from Jose Mourinho and United?