Anthony Martial‘s performance against Sunderland was one in which Manchester United fans got to see the best of the Frenchman outside of scoring goals.
There have been plenty of moments already this season which stand-out for Martial but one in particular stands out for us from the Sunderland game.
Early in the first half, the ball was played into Martial’s feet and he immediately took it under control, sold a Sunderland player short with a feint and showed how confident he was with the ball at his feet.
It’s only a short clip but it typifies how Martial has been playing so far. He can hold the ball up, he’s got the strength to push off defenders, he’s got the skill to switch it between both feet quickly and he’s got the awareness to find a team-mate while under real pressure from the opposition.
United haven’t had a centre-forward who can genuinely hold the ball up like Martial for some time and it has already made such a difference in attack.
Marouane Fellaini might have been able to hold the ball up but he’s about as dynamic as a ruler, so it invariably led to the ball simply being played backwards. Now, Martial’s got unpredictability and that makes him such a dangerous asset.
Next weekend United have a tough away game to Arsenal but Martial will have good memories of the Emirates Stadium having won there previously with AS Monaco, and Louis van Gaal will need the Frenchman in top form if his side is to come away with three points from that game.