Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has been ordered to show one struggling the star the door this summer with Alan Shearer and Ian Wright both destroying the player following his struggles this season.
The Red Devils have made some solid strides this season under the Dutchman’s control, already winning the Carabao Cup. More silverware could follow in the FA Cup, though the real prize this season will be in securing a top-four finish.
That race looks set to go down to the wire after Sunday’s 1-0 defeat at West Ham left them just a point clear of fifth-placed Liverpool. And while they have a game in hand, successive defeats against the Hammers and Brighton do not bode well.
Sunday’s defeat certainly appeared to illustrate the holes in Ten Hag’s squad that still persist. Indeed, the selection of Wout Weghorst provoked plenty of outrage with Rio Ferdinand suggesting the Dutchman’s selection will anger at least four United stars.
However, it was the introduction of Anthony Martial as a second-half substitute which appeared to get up Shearer’s goat.
The Frenchman stepped on to the pitch in the 57th-minute as a replacement for Weghorst. And the 27-year-old spurned a good chance to score what would have been just his fifth Premier League goal of the season, only to see Lukas Fabianski deny him.
Truth be told, that was as good as it got for the Frenchman and he failed to make an impact during his time on the field.
His deal is due to expire in summer 2024, while United have the option to extend that further.
Shearer orders Man Utd to sell Anthony Martial
However, Shearer is adamant that Martial just isn’t good enough for United. And he says a parting of ways would be in all parties’ best interests this summer.
“Anthony Martial has had enough time at Manchester United,” Shearer said on Premier League Productions.
“You don’t need to make any big decision on him because I think the decision has already been made. Or, it should already have been made!
“He’s been there long enough, he’s had enough chances. He’s not good enough to take Man United to where they want to be.
“If he was good enough he would be starting on a regular basis and he would be scoring goals. He’s had his time and it hasn’t worked for him, that’s my opinion.”
Shearer’s view is also backed up by former Arsenal striker Ian Wright.
And he also says Martial must know the writing is on the wall for him at Old Trafford.
“With all due respect to Martial, if you’ve got Wout Weghorst starting in front of you, you’ve got a problem,” he said.
United now have four games left in the Premier League season to secure a top-four finish. They next face Wolves at Old Trafford this Saturday.
Gary Neville hits out at Glazers over United struggles
United’s reliance on Weghorst and Martial in attack, meanwhile, has drawn a furious reaction from Gary Neville in the wake of the defeat.
He claims the failure to properly strengthen in January could hurt United in their quest for the top four. Having scored just one goal in the last three Premier League games, Neville says any failure to finish fourth will directly land on the Glazers’ shoulders.
He tweeted: “The real disgrace are the Glazers… Members of staff on and off the pitch are in an uncertain position waiting for new owners! Let alone recruitment and what their budget is going to be! This should have been done! Classless to the end!”
However, his Sky Sports colleague Jamie Carragher could not resist a cheeky retort following Neville’s tweet.
Replying sarcastically, the Liverpool great said: “Yeah, the Glazers decided to play Weghorst as a No 10, spend £90m on Antony and £70m on Casemiro (31) on a five-year deal!”
Despite the criticism, Martial will unlikely be short of offers. He is seemingly wanted in Italy with Inter Milan, Juventus and AC Milan all linked with his signature.