Louis van Gaal embraces Anthony Martial

Martial is thriving under Ten Hag but the warning is clear as the Man United striker’s trend emerges

Monaco desperate to review that Ballon d’Or clause because Anthony Martial is back baby He starts well for a new trainer.

Martial was in fine pre-season form for Manchester United under Erik ten Hag, scoring in every friendly and generally appearing like a striker reinvigorated by the challenge. But as the following shows, he often initially thrives under a new coach; The problem is longer term.

Louis van Gaal (September 2015)
The first five games
: Liverpool (3-1 W), PSV (2-1 W), Southampton (3-2 W), Ipswich (3-0 W), Sunderland (3-0 W)
begins: 3
Gates: 4
assists: 1
What the manager said at the time:

It was a ridiculous amount of money, but it’s the crazy world we’re in. I didn’t buy Martial for me. I bought it for the next Manchester United manager. As a 19-year-old you can’t expect consistency, you usually have dips, so I expect that from him too. In three games he has shown that his talent is at a high level and he has shown that he can play in our system. He has shown that he wants and can do it.

Martial was named Premier League Player of the Month in September and was voted Golden Boy Award winner in December of his first season at Manchester United.

Jose Mourinho (August-September 2016)
The first five games
: Bournemouth (3-1 W), Southampton (2-0 W), Hull (1-0 W), Manchester City (2-1 N), Feyenoord (1-0 N)
begins: 4
Gates: 0
assists: 2
What the manager said at the time:

“Last season, no martial, no three points. No martial goals and three wins this season. When a team isn’t playing very well and someone comes out in the middle and goes straight to the highlight. This is a different picture. Other players score goals.”

Mourinho was is said to have told Martial about it after the second of those games to “improve his game” and “focus on his career”. The couple then hit it off perfectly.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (December 2018-January 2019)
The first five games
: Cardiff (5-1 W), Bournemouth (4-0 W), Newcastle (2-1 W), Spurs (1-0 W), Brighton (2-1 W)
begins: 5
Gates: 1
assists: 1
What the manager said at the time:

“It’s up to each player: how do you decide to develop your own career? Cristiano was the best as he has changed now; that’s part of every player – you have to orientate yourself and have more challenges ahead of you. I’m talking about my experience at this club [with Ronaldo] and what [Martial] reachable. I’m talking about Cristiano’s career, what he did, how he got there.”

Martial signed his last contract with Manchester United at the end of Solskjaer’s first month as caretaker manager. “This club is all about winning trophies and I’m sure the next silver medal is not far away,” he said. This deal runs for two more years.


One player per Premier League club ‘like a signing’ this season


Claudio Ranieri (Monaco, November-December 2013)
The first five games
: Nantes (1-0 W), Stade Rennais (2-0 W), Nice (3-0 W), Ajaccio (1-0 W), Guingamp (2-0 W)
begins: 4
Gates: 2
assists: 1
What the manager later said, in September 2015:

“The sporting director told me that there is a good striker in Lyon. Every Saturday I went to the academy in Monaco and when we played Lyon three years ago he told me to watch him. I watched this guy and at the end I said he was very good. Then, at the end of the season, the sporting director said: ‘Claudio, there is an opportunity to buy this guy. Take it. Walk.’ I didn’t hesitate, I had seen him play and I knew he was something special. Every time he hit the ball, something special happened. Maybe he wasn’t involved in the game when suddenly… whoops, he came to life. He has this fantastic ability when he smells a goal and then flicks it on at just the right moment – ​​that’s Anthony.”

Ranieri brought Martial to Monaco and gave him his Ligue Un debut replacing Radamel Falcao.

Leonardo Jardim (Monaco, August-September 2014)
The first five games
: Lorient (L2-1), Nantes (W1-0), Lille (D1-1), Lyon (L2-1), Guingamp (W1-0)
begins: 0
Gates: 0
assists: 0
What the manager said later, in October 2015:

“Last year he played poorly at the beginning of the season and then we worked a lot on his physical and mental qualities. And when you work hard at a club like Monaco, with good methods and a good team, it’s easy to improve and move to a big European club.”

In the second of those games, Martial came on in the 61st minute for tactical reasons and was substituted in the 88th, with Jardim noticeably frustrated with his positioning and reticence.

Didier Deschamps (France, September-November 2015)
The first five games
: Portugal (1-0 W), Serbia (2-1 W), Armenia (4-0 W), Denmark (2-1 W), Germany (2-0 W)
begins: 2
Gates: 0
assists: 3
What the manager said at the time:

“He has the potential. Everyone is surprised by what he’s doing at United but it’s good for him and good for us. He deserves to be here. It was anything but easy from what was written and said about him. It silenced a few people. He’s young, he may have more complicated times. He can do great things. He did it in Monaco. He’s doing it at a different level club now so it’s easier to pay attention to his performances. But he was always talented.”

Deschamps brought Martial to Euro 2016 but left him out of the 2018 World Cup squad and Euro 2020 selection. He made his international debut as a substitute for Karim Benzema.

Julen Lopetegui (Seville, February-March 2022)
The first five games
: Osasuna (0-0 D), Elche (2-0 D), Dinamo Zagreb (3-1 D), Espanyol (1-1 D), Rayo Vallecano (1-1 D)
begins: 4
Gates: 1
assists: 1
What the manager said:

“Anthony has to give us a lot more. It was his first game and it’s not easy to adapt, he’s played little this year and needs to get into the momentum and gain minutes and confidence.

Sevilla president Jose Castro simply stated that Martial’s recent loan move to La Liga ‘didn’t work’ despite the ‘important money’ spent on Martial’s temporary acquisition. There was no attempt to make the arrangement permanent.


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