Anthony Martial has been treated unfairly but needs to ‘buckle down’ to secure his Manchester United future, according to club legend Dwight Yorke.
The Frenchman’s form has been patchy at best since the brilliant 23-goal season of 2019/20.
But since then, from being the club’s first choice centre-forward, Martial now finds himself behind Cristiano Ronaldo and Edinson Cavani in the pecking order.
He is also struggling to win back the left wing berth, with competition from Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho and with manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer sometimes opting to play Paul Pogba in that position.
And speaking at a sponsor event (via goal.com), Yorke has advised the 25-year-old that he needs to step up.
‘When you play for this club and you’re not doing the business and your form dips for whatever reason you’re going to be under scrutiny, Yorke said.
‘He’s got to buckle down really if he has a future at this football club.
‘He’s undoubtedly got immense talent and all the attributes we like to see in an attacking player and there’s no question he can be that vital player for us but at the moment he’s not in the squad and he’s got to find a way to get back into the team.
‘He’s been a bit of a mixed bag to be fair. He had that one season when he was outstanding and he looked a serious threat but I think he’s been unfairly treated in some way because I think that No.9 role is a specialist role and you have to play that position week in, week out, to get familiarised with it.
‘When he first started off he started off on the left and then the right so he’s not really settled that much.
‘He needs to be playing week in week out to really see the best of him. You can’t give him 10 or 20 minutes and expect him to be the finished article, it just doesn’t happen.’
Martial was given a rare start on Saturday and rewarded his selection with a goal. But it was not enough to secure victory for United, nor to silence many of his critics.