Martial – Manchester United forward Anthony Martial has expressed frustration at being unable to pin down a permanent place in Jose Mourinho’s team this season, calling his place on the bench “annoying.”
The 21-year-old Frenchman has struggled to reproduce the form of his first campaign at Old Trafford, which followed his big-money arrival from Monaco.
He started in United’s win over Tottenham last Sunday, before sitting out the victory at Crystal Palace on Wednesday, as his team prepare to face West Bromwich Albion on Saturday.
In a French television interview, Martial said it was a challenge he had to confront after finding himself in and out of the Red Devils lineup, starting seven of 16 Premier League matches so far this term.
He told broadcaster SFR Sport: “It’s annoying to be on the bench, it’s truly annoying, but it’s a test you have to overcome and that’s how you progress.
“It’s difficult because all you want is to be able to help the team and when you’re on the bench you can’t.
“But these are choices and you have to accept it.”
Martial is aware of the attention on him, as a young player who made a positive impression after his surprise move in the 2015 summer transfer window.
The signing of Zlatan Ibrahimovic from Paris Saint-Germain, and the Swede’s impressive scoring record, has limited the available places in the United forward line, meaning Martial has often been squeezed out.
But the France international is determined to be his own man, driven by his own ambition to improve more than any other pressures.
“People expect a lot of me, but sometimes they forget I’m still young,” he added.
“Everyone can think what they want, it won’t change anything.”