Manchester United legend Roy Keane berates Anthony Martial for his performance against Newcastle United
Manchester United legend Roy Keane chastised Anthony Martial for his performance against Newcastle United at St James’ Park. Keane expressed his anger towards the lack of effort from Martial which is unbecoming of a United player.
The Red Devils lost 1-0 to Newcastle in the Premier League game as the Magpies dominated the complete game. United only mustered one shot on target from eight efforts compared to four out of 22 shots from the hosts.
United manager Erik ten Hag deployed Martial as the main striker while Rasmus Hojlund made it to the bench. Hojlund returned from the injury he sustained before the November international break with Ten Hag opting not to risk him.
United’s attack department has faced severe criticism for failing to score goals in the Premier League this season. Martial, Marcus Rashford, and Antony are the senior members of the department who have failed to lead by example.
However, the contribution of several players in overall tactics in games has been far below par and expectations. The team has struggled with cohesiveness and working on offensive and defensive phases together as a unit.
“We mention Martial… we forgive Martial because he scores a goal every 14 years. But let me tell you when at Newcastle under pressure, we get that ball into you, you better get hold of that ball to get us up the pitch and a bit of breathing space. He’s touching balls off and gives the ball away cheaply. You may as well go down the leagues.”
United signed Martial as a teenager during the deadline day in the summer of 2015. The 28-year-old has struggled with inconsistent performances and recurring injuries throughout his tenure with the Red Devils.
During the first half, Ten Hag and Martial engaged in an on-field altercation when the manager grew annoyed with Martial’s poor pressing. The Frenchman let Fabian Schar go past him with ease as the Newcastle centre-back initiated another attack.
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The Red Devils are currently seventh in the Premier League table, five points behind fourth-place Aston Villa. United need their senior players to be more cohesive in both phases of the play to be more competitive. Ten Hag cannot afford to miss out on the top-four finish that qualifies them for the next season’s Champions League.