Erik ten Hag sat down with the media today to speak on a range of topics ahead of Manchester United’s Premier League curtain-raiser against Wolverhampton Wanderers on Monday. Chief among the concerns, however, was the fitness of the team and the injury statuses of its players.
“Malacia’s will take some time, the same as Amad and Kobbie [Mainoo],” he said. “All the others, like Henderson, Hojlund are quite short notice but it will take a few weeks.
“We had 30 players on tour who were really fit and disappointment about Amad and disappointment about Kobbie absolutely, but that’s what happens when you go to the limits.”
For the most part, Ten Hag was pleased to report a clean bill of health aside from that, but it will unfortunately come as little surprise to hear of one usual suspect in the treatment room.
As reported by The Peoples Person earlier in the week, Anthony Martial had been back in full training, with club media informing the fanbase:
“Anthony Martial is back in full training after recovering from the injury which kept him out of our eight pre-season friendlies.”
That sparked speculation that the striker could be in line for an appearance against Wolverhampton Wanderers.
While short of a preseason, his position as the only centre forward in the squad holds true until new signing Rasmus Hojlund comes into fitness, which could take weeks.
A minor update from The Athletic, however, suggested that the Frenchman would have no involvement whatsoever: Rasmus Hojlund will have to wait to make his debut due to a back issue, while Anthony Martial is also out.
Anthony Martial was notable by his omission during the press conference, with Erik ten Hag mentioning just about every other player by name.
Few would have expected the mercurial striker to play out a full 90 minutes on Monday, with work still to do on the training pitch.
It will, however, come as a disappointment to fans that Martial appears to once more have nothing at all to offer – an all-too common occurrence over the last couple of seasons.