Paul Scholes believes Anthony Martial is missing the key assets needed to become Manchester United’s main centre-forward.
Martial had his best goalscoring season leading the line for the Reds last term, netting 23 goals in all competitions.
The Frenchman has again been utilised as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s striker when available this term, but operated from the left flank in Tuesday’s 4-1 victory over Istanbul Basaksehir at Old Trafford as Edinson Cavani gained match fitness up front.
There is often debate whether Martial is more effective from the left and that discussion within the fanbase will return after he had the constant beating of opposite man and ex-United defender Rafael da Silva.
Despite not getting on the scoresheet, Cavani’s gave Solskjaer’s side a focal point and with more evidence of his relentless work rate, some supporters believe the Uruguayan veteran should start getting the nod in the Premier League.
Martial still appears Solskjaer’s first choice but United great Scholes believes the 24-year-old is lacking the movement and hold up play to lead the line on a consistent basis for the Reds.
“Martial’s strength… we’ve spoke about him being a centre-forward, he’s not a good centre-forward,” he told BT Sport, as quoted by Goal.
“I don’t think he’s got that movement for centre-forward, he’s not good with his back to goal. But when he gets the ball and he’s facing someone, it’s a different position. You see him going at someone.”
Asked if Martial relies on confidence, Scholes added: “Definitely. He’s a little bit moody and you see him. But once he gets a goal there’s every chance he’ll go on to get three or four.”
Martial has had a slow start in front of goal this season and his form was distributed by a petulant red card in the humiliation to Tottenham Hotspur in October.
But we expect Solskjaer to keep faith in the forward for Sunday’s difficult trip to St Mary’s to face Southampton on Sunday.