Things have changed immeasurably at Old Trafford since Erik ten Hag came on board, though it seems that there’s still plenty of transfer business to be done at Manchester United.
The Dutchman has already won a trophy in his first season after the Red Devils defeated Newcastle United in the Carabao Cup final.
Winnable ties in the FA Cup against Brighton and Europa League against Sevilla hint at more potential success to come.
Whether or not that’s the case, there’s one player that isn’t likely to feel as enthused as his team-mates, and that’s because things just haven’t really worked out for Anthony Martial in the red half of Manchester.
A summer move now appears likely and Jonathan Johnson, writing exclusively for CaughtOffside’s Substack, noted where it all went wrong.
‘Expectations were sky-high for Anthony Martial when he arrived at Manchester United and made a fast start to life. He was in great form with Monaco and that continued at Old Trafford,’ he said.
‘However, once that wore off, it was clear that he was perhaps not at the level many thought he was at based on his early form. Mixed with behavioural issues and injuries, it has been a tough past few years and he has lost his way at international level too. A return to Ligue 1 could be a smart move for him given that his La Liga experience was not a roaring success.’
No one will surely forget his debut at Old Trafford and the goal against Liverpool that took the roof off the grand old stadium.
Since then, however, the Frenchman has flattered to deceive. A world-beater one minute and ordinary the next.
Ten Hag is unlikely to want players in or around his squad that blow hot and cold. After a successful spell at Ajax, he’s brought that winning mentality to United within the space of a few short months.
Blackballing Cristiano Ronaldo showed everyone that the manager wasn’t for messing with, and he’s backed up that and other big decisions with a brand of exciting and dominant football not seen at the club for years.