Anthony Martial has been the best thing to come out of the LVG era at United. Signed from Monaco for an initial fee of £36 million, which could rise up to £58 million due to incentives, the deal broke the transfer fee record for a teenager.
Many pundits doubted the fee, but were quickly proven wrong. The Frenchman had a dream debut, scoring against rivals Liverpool at Old Trafford. He scored twice in the next match against Southampton, and ended the season as the clubs top scorer. He also scored a last minute winner in the FA Cup semi-final vs Everton, which led to the club winning the fabled trophy at the end of the season.
However, Martial suffered from the sophomore slump many young players have to deal with. He found consistent game time hard to come by under new manager Mourinho. He managed to grab 8 goals in all competitions, but was often on the bench in favour of wingers who were better defensively.
Now, there are transfer rumours surrounding the player. First, reports came out of Italy saying that Inter Milan would only allow Ivan Perisic to join United if Martial went the other way. Soon after, Kicker reported that Wolfsburg were interested in taking the Frenchman on loan.
United must not allow Martial to leave the club in the summer, either permanently or on a loan.
Everyone knows United’s problems last season were in the goals department. The club scored less goals than Bournemouth for crying out loud. Martial is a goalscorer, and he’s proven it before. He was the top scorer for United in the 2015/16 season, with 17 goals in total. He played as a striker that season, and played up top for Monaco before then as well. A shift to the wing lowered his production value, so he should be returned to his natural position. Martial could also be used as a devastating super sub, with his speed torching already tired defenders.
United also had vast injury problems last season, and depth is absolutely needed. If Tony were to leave, that would make Lukaku and Rashford the only strikers on the United roster. Martial is also versatile, giving Mourinho different options when choosing his lineup. He can play anywhere across the front three, allowing other players to play in their preferred positions.
United cannot lose Martial, even for a season. He has become a fan favourite at the club, with many Twitter accounts dedicated to the Frenchman. He is also a great locker room personality, often featuring on teammates social media videos. Martial is still only 21, and still has the potential to become one of the world’s best. United must make sure his eventual rise to the top happens in Manchester.