Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Barcelona Keeping A Keen Eye On This Manchester United Forward: Decent Option For Xavi?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

In a recent report, Marca mentioned that Barcelona are keeping a keen eye on Manchester United forward Anthony Martial who has fallen out of favour at Old Trafford. It has been claimed that the Catalan club have identified the French winger as a potential target.

Martial’s Limited Role At Old Trafford This Season

Martial has seen game time hard to come by at the Theatre of Dreams this season following the arrivals of Cristiano Ronaldo and Jadon Sancho last summer. The 25-year-old has only scored one goal in nine matches for the Red Devils during this campaign so far across various competitions.

The Massy-born sensation has made most of his appearances as a substitute which could be why he is only averaging 0.7 shots and 0.7 dribbles per game in Premier League football. However, he has been accurate when distributing the ball in the final third after completing 80.8% of his attempted passes in the English top tier (stats via whoscored).

Barcelona (Anthony Martial)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – MARCH 07: Anthony Martial of Manchester United arrives at the stadium ahead of during the Premier League match between Manchester City and Manchester United at Etihad Stadium on March 07, 2021 in Manchester, England. Sporting stadiums around the UK remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
The 4th Official uses images provided by the following image agency: Getty Images (https://www.gettyimages.de/)
Imago Images (https://www.imago-images.de/)

Is Martial A Decent Option For Man United?

Martial is a quick and agile centre-forward who can time his runs well in behind the opponent’s defence. He is a delight to watch when he is dribbling at full swing out on the flanks. The 30-time France international is a streaky goal-scorer but needs to find some consistency if he wants to earn regular first-team starts at the highest level. He is also versatile enough to play anywhere across the frontline.

At the moment, Martial is surplus to requirements at Old Trafford. Thus, it makes sense for Barca to move in for him as they are in dire need to add more quality to their frontline. The Frenchman will undoubtedly bolster Xavi’s attacking options at the Nou Camp.

At 25, there is still time for Martial to turn his fortunes around for the better in European football. Therefore, Barcelona could be an ideal destination for him. We can expect the Man United outcast to bring some pace and goals to Xavi‘s attack. All in all, Martial will be a decent option for Barca to consider this January or next summer.

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