Manchester United starlet Anthony Martial can reach the level of five-time Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo, according to the club’s interim manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
The French international, who once touted as the ‘next-Ronaldo’, is rated high by the football pundits and coaches. However, the United star failed to live up to his expectations until Solskjaer took charge at Old Trafford.
Martial has impressed ever since Solskjaer took charge following the departure of Jose Mourinho. The French international scored in 11th goal of the season in a comfortable 3-0 win against Fulham.
The Premier League star managed to gain the attention of all by scoring a solo goal, something Ronaldo did 12 years earlier. The individual effort of 23-year old made former Manchester United Captain Gary Neville compare the French with the Portuguese.
The caretaker manager Solskjaer feels that Martial could reach the level of Manchester United legend Cristiano Ronaldo.
Talking about that goal from Ronaldo 12 years ago, Solskjaer said, “It was towards the end of the game and we played a very poor game and Cristiano scored it.”
“He [Martial] does have similarities, of course. If he wants to be at Cristiano’s level, Anthony knows what he has to do. It is up to him. He has the talent.”
Talking about Martial’s goal, Solskjaer added: “If you look at his goal and his starting position, he is not free of defensive duties.
“He was in the middle of our half when we won the ball and he gets the ball 20 yards further up on our halfway line and he runs with it, so he does the defensive bit.
“He knows he needs to do some defensive work but he has got some quality going forward. He is electric and his balance, his pace, everything about him. When you are a full-back, you don’t want him running at you. He knows he has to defend.”
After a lack of playing time at Old Trafford, the 23-year old was looking for a way out before Mourinho was sacked in December. To United’s fortune, the French international has decided to continue with the Premier League side and signed a new five-year contract in January.
“I am glad he is in my team. He has contributed to so many chances, so many goals. He is a Manchester United player. He excites the crowd. He excites the manager. He excites his team-mates. And he is a great character around the place,” Solskjaer concluded.