The self-proclaimed ‘Special One’ did not have a special start to his stint at Manchester United. Jose Mourinho led his side to a 0-0 draw against arch rivals Liverpool on Monday night but it was not the kind of display the fans would have liked after a transfer window where the Red Devils made a world-record transfer. Eight games, 14 points with just four wins- not at all impressive!
Jose Mourinho himself would not be happy with the way his team has performed so far and would definitely want things to improve as soon as possible. As per talkSPORT, Manchester United are closely monitoring the progress of Sporting Lisbon starlet Gelson Martins who has also attracted interest from both Real Madrid and Barcelona.
Martins has set the Portuguese Primeira Liga on fire this season with two goals and six assists from seven games. Already capped twice for the Portuguese senior team, he has a huge potential and can be a long-term prospect at the Theater of Dreams. Here is a SWOT analysis of the 21-year-old.
The 21-year-old fleet-footed winger is right now one of the hottest prospects in European football and his good performances have not gone unnoticed. Martins is a versatile player who offers his best if deployed on the right flank but can also ply his trade just behind the striker or as a left winger.
Unlike most modern day wingers, the Portuguese international knows how to cross the ball and can create a deadly partnership with Zlatan Ibrahimović who is a menace in the air. Six assists from seven games suggest that the youngster is not at all a selfish player and knows exactly when to release the ball which will only improve as he gains more experience.
Gelson Martins looks like a brilliant young player with plenty of potential. However, he has played only 54 first-team games for Sporting till date. The 21-year-old is still a raw talent and has plenty to learn to become a world-beater. Mourinho is not particularly a manager who is recognised well for working with young players and grooming them. In fact, he rarely gives his young player first-team opportunities. The young winger’s career could face a stall if he opts for a move to Old Trafford.
Despite Manchester United breaking the bank on Mkhitaryan this summer, the Armenian has failed to make a place for himself in the starting lineup. So, the right flank is still up for grabs and Martins can make it his own on the long run. The 21-year-old has an advantage of having his countryman Mourinho as the manager and might be favoured by the 53-year-old.
One big threat as we had mentioned earlier is that Martins’ career might face a stall if he joins Manchester United. Jose Mourinho is not a manager like Mauricio Pochettino or Pep Guardiola who would throw a young player directly to the starting XI. He rather prefers big names. From that point of view, it could prove to be a career-threatening move for the 21-year-old who is doing really well of late and eventually get linked with the top clubs in Europe.