Erik ten Hag speaks out on Anthony Martial’s role in the Manchester united squad
Nottingham Forest will be Anthony Martial’s 18th missed match for Manchester United this season.
Erik ten Hag believes Manchester United play their “best football” when
Martial has missed 14 weeks of the season due to four separate injuries and has yet to play 90 minutes.
The 27-year-old has already been ruled out of United’s League Cup semi-final first leg against Nottingham Forest, the 18th of 31 games he will miss.
Since returning from a failed loan spell with Sevilla a year ago, Martial has only scored five goals. He was substituted in eight successive starts until he sustained a leg injury against Manchester City which caused him to be unavailable for last week’s draw with Crystal Palace and defeat to Arsenal.
“He is not constantly injured, he is playing games,” Ten Hag said. “He has to work on that. On that fact, I agree. He has to be more available and he can’t do nothing for it in that sense and sometimes it’s also bad luck.
“But sometimes you don’t know what the reason behind it is. But when he is there, he is really important for us because we play our best football when he is available. He has to be aware of that as well. So if we want to be successful, we need him First thing is, he has to be available.”
When it was suggested Martial lacked the mentality to constantly make himself available, Ten Hag replied: “I don’t want to set that conclusion. What I said: no one is the same.
“I can’t see and I can’t point what it is because if I had I would work on that process to get it turned around.”