Arsene Wenger: Anthony Martial is an ‘exceptional talent’

by Robbie Dunne

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger believes new Manchester United signing Anthony Martial is an “exceptional talent”.

The former Monaco attacker became the most expensive teenager in world football when he signed for Man United on transfer deadline day for a reported fee of £36m.

Wenger has his finger on the pulse of French football and has signed some excellent talents in the past such as Thierry Henry, Emmanuel Petit and Robert Pires.

While Wenger believes Martial is talented, he claims the teenager was never a transfer target for Arsenal this summer.

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“We have known about him since he was a kid,” Wenger said.

“He is more a winger-type but is an exceptional talent.

“I believe he plays in positions where we have [Alex Oxlade] Chamberlain, [Alexis] Sanchez, [Joel] Campbell. We have plenty of players in his positions.”

Few United fans had ever heard of Martial prior to their late August bid for the player. It appears, though, that many of the top clubs in European football were tracking his development.

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While £36m might be an exorbitant price for a teenager, if he can do what Wayne Rooney or Cristiano Ronaldo did at United then his price will become an afterthought. Given his age, presumed potential and the nature of the transfer market in recent times, Martial could be worth much more than his fee in five years if he fulfils the potential he possesses.

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