'What is he here for?' Saha blasts criticism of Martial's attitude

‘What is he here for? He needs to score goals’: Louis Saha blasts criticism of Anthony Martial’s attitude… and insists manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has the determination to succeed at Manchester United

  • Louis Saha is an admirer of Anthony Martial, saying his skills are ‘unbelievable’
  • Martial has scored three goals in Manchester United’s last three matches  
  • Former United forward Saha was also excited to see how Odion Ighalo fares
  • He gives Harry Maguire an 8/10 for this season and backs Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

Former Manchester United striker Louis Saha insists any criticism of Anthony Martial’s body language should be disregarded, as his objective is simply to score goals. 

The much-maligned Martial has stepped up to the plate in Marcus Rashford’s absence, scoring a goal in each of the club’s last three games taking his season tally to 15 in all competitions. 

Fellow Frenchman Saha, who played at Old Trafford for four and a half years under Sir Alex Ferguson, admits he is a big fan of the 24-year-old and reminded critics of what Martial’s primary responsibility is out on the pitch. 

Anthony Martial has scored three from three and is thriving in Marcus Rashford’s absence

Former Man United striker and fellow Frenchman Louis Saha admits he is a big fan of Martial 

‘His skills are just unbelievable – the anger and aggressiveness he is showing right now is unplayable,’ Saha told Sportsmail

‘Everyone always tells me “he needs to run more”, but why is he here? He needs to score goals. Don’t tell him to run more if it’s going to affect his goal ratios. 

‘The attitude doesn’t matter. Playing for United can be really hard if you’re not getting fed by your team-mates, but everyone knows he is a massive threat and only needs one or two chances to score.’ 

Martial scored via a delicious chip over goalkeeper Ben Foster against Watford on Sunday 

Saha also acknowledged that he was excited to see how Odion Ighalo fared and was glowing about Harry Maguire’s first season at the club.

‘He has a different sort of style [to other forward options] and has a lot of strength and power – the competition will be really helpful,’ Saha pointed out, speaking from Marriott Hotels Seat of Dreams at Old Trafford. 

‘Of course, when you go to a different country there’s a question of how you’re going to be when you come back, but he’s clearly a motivated lad and I’m excited to see more. 

Odion Ighalo was brought in from Shanghai Shenhua last month but is yet to score for the club


  • Position: 5th
  • Wins: 11
  • Draws: 8
  • Losses: 8
  • Goals scored/conceded: 41/29 
  • Top scorer: Marcus Rashford (10) 

‘Maguire has definitely been one of the successful signings. With all he offers and his leadership, I would say Maguire has been at least an 8/10 this season.’ 

Saha, now 41, also backed former team-mate Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to succeed as United boss due to his determination and motivation levels. 

Although Saha divulged that he saw Roy Keane and Gary Neville as more vocal leaders in the dressing room in the mid-2000s, he praised the Norwegian’s endearing features in the top job currently. 

‘Of course, as a young manager in such a big position you’re going to make mistakes,’ Saha added. 

United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer played with striker Saha at the club from 2004 to 2007

‘But I appreciate the honesty and openness he has about him. He will improve and he he has the power and the drive. I saw back then his determination to improve every day.’  

Since the winter break, United have won both of their games in the Premier League and are now just three points off fourth-placed Chelsea. 

They also drew 1-1 at Club Brugge in the Europa League last-32 first leg – the return encounter is on Thursday evening at Old Trafford.  

Marriott Hotels, Official Hotel Partner of Manchester United, is upgrading three fans at each home Premier League match to the Marriott Hotels #SeatOfDreams.

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