Club News: Frank Leboeuf has urged Erik ten Hag to give more time off to Lisandro Martinez
Former Chelsea centre-back Frank Leboeuf has urged Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag to give more time to Lisandro Martinez to allow him to return at 100 per cent as the Premier League action resumes.
Martinez enjoyed quite a successful World Cup in Qatar with Argentina as the South American side finished as champions after defeating France in the finals. While Martinez did not play the final, he featured five times for his country and impressed in all of them.
Ten Hag had not given a definitive answer and said that it was too early to determine if the Argentine would be available for the clash against Nottingham Forest on Tuesday (December 27).
However, Leboeuf while speaking on ESPN FC (h/t Manchester Evening News) and who has also won the World Cup with France in 1998, has told the United boss to ‘forget’ about the 24-year-old.
“That guy became champion of the world and the coach says, ‘he needs to understand that he has to play very soon’. Forget about it, leave him alone. If you want a 100 per cent player with all the things in his head, don’t play him.”
“If you want your players to be 100 per cent Mr Ten Hag, I just want to tell you, forget about Mr Martinez. It’s absolutely normal.”
Martinez joined us this summer from Ajax for €67 million including add-ons. After getting off to a turbulent start, the 24-year-old has established himself as an undisputed centre-back for the Red Devils.
Along with Frenchman Raphael Varane, the duo have become the backbone of the defence as Ten Hag looks to take the famous club back to its glory days. The Argentine has featured in 21 games in all competitions so far for us.
It is understandable why the centre-back would be hesitant to come back so early to the club after having won the ultimate prize in the game. But the 24-year-old would have known that this would happen if he won the cup.
Martinez looks highly unlikely to feature against Forest on Tuesday. Harry Maguire could start in his place, with the Argentine now most likely to feature against Wolverhampton Wanderers on December 31.
More Manchester United News
- Erik ten Hag unsure when Lisandro Martinez will return to Manchester United after World Cup triumph with Argentina
- Erik ten Hag optimistic about making top four in the Premier League with Manchester United
- Former Tottenham Hotspur star Toby Alderweireld does not regret failed Manchester United move
Each game matters in a Premier League season. Hopefully, Maguire and Varane are up to the task. Like Martinez, the duo were individually really impressive during the World Cup in Qatar.