Louis van Gaal: Manchester United have been watching Anthony Martial for a while

by Leo Nieboer

Louis van Gaal has insisted that new Manchester United signing Anthony Martial had been a target for some time.

Martial became the world’s most expensive teenager after joining Man United on a four-year contract for a fee of £36m.

The 19-year-old, who isn’t particularly well known by those outside of France, has divided opinion upon his arrival to Old Trafford; Phil Neville believes that the young starlet is an excellent addition to the squad, while some supporters remain reserved about the largely inexperienced Martial.

Van Gaal, however, insists that after extensively monitoring the forward, Martial will be an excellent addition to United’s currently destitute strikeforce.

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“Anthony is a naturally talented, young, multi-functional forward with great potential. We have been watching him for a while now and he has developed immensely during his time at AS Monaco,” said van Gaal.

“I am delighted he has joined Manchester United as I believe this is the right club for him to continue his development as a young player. He has all the attributes to become a top football player; however we need to give him time to adjust to his new environment and the rhythm of the Premier League.”

While the Dutchman may be prepared to give the youngster time to prove himself, the same possibly can’t be said about some supporters, who will be keen to see Martial hit the ground running with the same fervour and vivacity as Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney before him.

Anthony Martial

Nobody predicted Martial to be van Gaal’s notorious ‘surprise striker’ of the summer transfer window; but as it is, the 19-year-old, who is being labelled by some as ‘the next Thierry Henry’ and a ‘panic buy’ by others, is the Dutchman’s entrusted No.9. And while he may lack experience and household name status, Martial brings the one thing United fans have been crying for in abundance – raw pace in attack.

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