Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has warned Anthony Martial that they are plenty of players that would gladly replace him as the Red Devils’ centre forward.
Martial was moved to the centre from the left-wing to become the club’s focal point after Romelu Lukaku’s exit last summer.
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The France international has been in good form so far, scoring 19 times in 37 games for the club in what is his best scoring season at United.
Solskjaer concedes he’s delighted with the progress of Martial and says he has listened to his advice, majorly when it comes to scoring around the six-yard box.
However, the Norwegian has warned Martial that he must keep up the good work because there are other players that could take his position.
‘We’ll keep challenging him [Martial],’ said Solskjaer. ‘There are always players in and around the team – and outside the club – who would want to be No. 9 for Manchester United.
‘He’s playing with a smile on his face. Anthony has had a really good season, he’s been really important for us. We felt it during the couple of months he was out injured; we struggled.
‘He knows that we trust him. He knows that we’ll have patience with him and that we’ll keep working with him. He’s [Martial] a good finisher but it’s about being in and around the right positions. He’s developed more and more in terms of getting into that penalty area and closer to the goal.
‘We do a lot of work in finishing groups and sessions but it’s also down to him to be mentally sharp and ready. We’ve always known he’s a quality player and highly, highly skilful.’
United were desperate to sign Erling Haaland in January but he opted to join Dortmund instead.
That led to the signing Odion Ighalo on an emergency loan, which was extended by a further six months due to the pandemic.
But, United are not expected to sign the Nigerian striker on a permanent deal and want to sign a young player to compete with Anthony Martial.