Manchester United fans were left dissatisfied following Anthony Martial‘s performance during France’s 0-0 draw with Belarus on Tuesday night.
The 20-year-old, keen to build on his improved performance against Italy last week, displayed some smart flashes of skill – alongside some powerful dribbles down the left hand side – in the first-half, but was ultimately unsuccessful when it came to forcing the issue for Didier Deschamps’ men against a sturdy Belarus side.
Man United fans were quick to register their disappointment in light of another underwhelming performance from the youngster.
Hopefully the goal Martial scored for France gives him a confidence boost going back to the prem. Need him back to his best
— • (@Pogbruh) September 7, 2016
France didn't have a great game. Martial got subbed at 57 min. Rashford must start ahead of him on Saturday if mkhi is playing on RW. #mufc
— AH (@A_MUnited) September 6, 2016
Anthony Martial was substituted after 57 minutes and Paul Pogba played 90 as France failed to overcome Belarus in World Cup Qualifiers 0-0
— RedReveal (@RedReveal) September 6, 2016
If France wants to unlock their potential, they gotta play Martial in his right position. Up front. With Dembele and Coman flanking him
— Beam (@Scamzel) September 6, 2016
Martial doesn't get appreciated as much with France as he doesn't with us. We love him though!
— Shane ???????????????????????????? ????⚪⚫ (@19Shane91) September 6, 2016
Martial was poor today. Payet has changed France's attack tremendously. #BLRFRA
— ∞ (@hoopnomics) September 6, 2016
Should we be worried by Martial’s recent dip in form?
It is, of course, dispiriting to see the 20-year-old, an effervescent force for the entirety of last season, display such a notable lack of confidence and conviction all of a sudden.
At the same time, though, United fans – and France fans, for that matter – ought to remember that Martial is just 20-years-old, with only two full seasons of senior football under his belt. Following his one man crusade last year, where Martial essentially carried United’s attack, people often forget that he is young, inexperienced and still developing.
With this in mind, can we really expect Martial to deliver rip-roaring performances every week? Of course not. It may be difficult to swallow for United fans, so accustomed to Martial ripping defences open, but this current dry patch is on the same level of importance as his purple patch last year when it comes to his progression as a footballer.