Solskjaer Used Ronaldo To Persuade Anthony Martial To Sign New Deal
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has backed Anthony Martial to follow in Cristiano Ronaldo’s footsteps and become a world class player at Manchester United, using the example to persuade the Frenchman to stay.
It was a surprise to many when Anthony Martial joined Manchester United in the summer of 2015, mainly because at that point most people hadn’t heard of the young French forward and United were in desperate need of another attacker.
The Frenchman has always had bags of potential but actually reaching it hasn’t always seemed within his reach, especially under Jose Mourinho.
The former manager didn’t seem to be too keen on Martial and was one of the players often picked out for criticism, although this season his form had improved.
Under Mourinho it looked like Martial would leave Old Trafford, especially with his contract expiring at the end of next season, but on Thursday the 23 year old signed a new five year deal.
In his Friday press conference Ole Gunnar Solskjaer revealed he’s challenged Martial to emulate former United forward Cristiano Ronaldo, saying:
“Cristiano was the best, the way he’s changed to now, that’s the player you’ve got to model yourself on and you’ve got to have more challenges ahead of you.
“I spoke to Anthony about my experience at this club what he can achieve at this club and as I said man times, I’m here to guide players until the summer.
“You can talk about Cristiano’s career, what he’s made, how he’s got there and all the fantastic players we’ve got, so I sat down with Anthony and he wants to be a part of this and we believe the club have got a top player there.
“I’ve been here for 15 years, coach, player, manager, and I know how much this club can give to your career. I think by being honest with him it’s the best place to be. I made my career here, it was easy to sell the club to Anthony but he knows what we’re capable of.
“The deal is confirmation that we are happy, with him, we believe in him, he’s got fantastic potential. He’s had ups and downs here, he’s been top scorer, he’s been developing.
“As a young lad, moving abroad, it’s not easy, but he knows he’s going to stay here for the coming future and I believe in him.”
Martial is amongst many who have improved since Solskjaer became manager, following Mourinho’s sacking after the 3-1 loss to Liverpool.
Like the Frenchman, when Ronaldo moved to United he was also relatively unknown and caught everyone’s attention with his debut against Bolton.
He soon became one of the best players in the world and won the Ballon d’Or at Old Trafford after helping Sir Alex Ferguson’s side with a league and Champions League double in 2008.
Can Martial emulate Ronaldo?