Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has singled out Manchester United star Anthony Martial for praise after his key role in Sunday’s 2-0 win over Manchester City.
United ended City’s long unbeaten run as goals from Bruno Fernandes and Luke Shaw secured a 2-0 win at the Etihad – though they remain 11 points adrift of the runaway league leaders.
Martial has struggled for form this campaign, netting just four league goals, but he won their early penalty which opened the scoring and was a constant threat throughout the derby.
The Frenchman was an injury doubt heading into the game and Solskjaer was delighted with the impact he made and hopes it is the beginning of a return to his old form.
‘I thought Anthony was absolutely superb today. He was more of the Anthony of old,’ Solskjaer told Sky Sports after the match.
‘He turns, gets hold of it, and to think he was a doubt this morning! ‘Until two hours before the game, until after the warm-up to be fair, I wasn’t sure if he was going to play or not. So fantastic. That was the same with Luke.’
Asked why Martial does not perform at that level more consistently, Solskjaer added: ‘It’s football, isn’t it? ‘Of course today he rediscovered himself I feel. He was really strong on the ball and positive.
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‘And we have to be positive, we have to be a positive team. We want to play at a high tempo, of course we do, but we had to defend well.
‘You’ve got to defend so you can attack spaces that appear.’
Asked if United’s win had reopened the Premier League title race, Solskjaer said: ‘No, we just take one game time. They are too far ahead to think we can catch them. They have been excellent. Even today they put you under so much pressure.’