Manchester United have been playing some wonderful football recently, and huge amounts of credit has to go to Jose Mourinho for that. The self-proclaimed Special One has changed the style of play and tactics of the Red Devils dramatically, and that has meant different personnel have been involved.
One player who hasn’t featured anywhere near as heavily for the Old Trafford club this season is Anthony Martial, who was, in my opinion, Manchester United’s best outfield player by a country mile last term.
Under Jose Mourinho, the 21-year-old Frenchman has found it tough, with the gaffer preferring Jesse Lingard, Marcus Rashford, Juan Mata and Henrikh Mkhitaryan to fill those wide spots.
Now the manager has been speaking to the media about his absence from the team, and what exactly is going on.
“Anthony I think, very young, as a start, very young, people forget that he is very young.” Jose Mourinho is quoted as saying by SFR Sport (translated by the Daily Express).
“Last season, Manchester United was playing completely different, completely different than we do today. He was basically, playing up front, the team had lots of basic ball possession, waiting just for a moment to put the ball in the space for Anthony to go and score a goal.
“This season it is more difficult. This season is more difficult, he needs a little bit of time to improve I think.”
At the end of the day, it is easy to forget that Martial is still a youngster and he still has a lot of developing and growing to do as a footballer. It will take time for him to adapt to new tactics and a different system, but he’s still a supremely talented footballer.
I’ve no doubts that his ability will shine through in the long-term, and as the season progresses he’ll be a mainstay in the Manchester United starting eleven once again.