Anthony Martial’s cousin Jema has confirmed that the Frenchman will not be leaving Manchester United this summer despite attracting interest from other clubs.
The Frenchman enjoyed a groundbreaking opening campaign at Old Trafford, claiming 17 goals and posing as a constant threat from the left hand side under Louis van Gaal in an otherwise moribund season, but struggled to adapt to Jose Mourinho’s methods last term and often found himself consigned to the bench with the Portuguese preferring wingers with more defensive discipline.
He has enjoyed a promising pre-season, displaying his individual brilliance against Real Madrid and Sampdoria, but his continued absence from the starting XI for the UEFA Super Cup and last weekend’s win over West Ham has prompted Inter Milan and Tottenham Hotspur into expressing interest in securing his services this season.
But Jema, taking to social media, made it clear that the club had no interest whatsoever in letting his cousin leave Old Trafford before the window shuts on August 31.
“For Manchester United, Anthony’s departure is not a possibility, even on loan. They rely on him,” he said.
Martial is a frighteningly dangerous talent and Mourinho knows that. His absence from the starting XI stems purely from question marks surrounding whether he can put in the defensive work – as well as offensive – offered by Marcus Rashford or Jesse Lingard, rather than any deficiency of talent. His astronomical rise to stardom soon after arriving in the Premier League often leads us into forgetting that he is, in fact, just 21.
There is still plenty of time for the youngster to develop and his recent cameo against West Ham – during which he claimed a goal and an assist in ten minutes – shows that he is moving inexorably in the right direction. And Mourinho is clearly keen to give him a chance to progress.
Speaking soon after Martial demolished Dani Carvajal in pre-season, the Portuguese said: “Obviously we want more consistency in his talent,” Mourinho said. “I think today was positive for him, that’s why I left him on for 90 minutes on the pitch.”
“He was enjoying and was trying things, it’s important in these friendly matches to try things and he did, so it’s good for Anthony and his confidence.
“He’s a young player, still time to learn, still time to improve, still time to develop, and it’s also his personality. I can say that he is training better than before, he’s working harder than before, it’s a question to bring his talent more in a consistent way.”