What a great few days it’s been for the club as they move to rid themselves of Jose Mourinho. First, they sold Marouane Fellaini to China, ridding them of his two year contract, albatross of a salary, and overall bad football ability.
Next up was signing Anthony Martial to a long term contract extension and frankly it’s about time.
After breaking through as a teenager in the 2015/16 campaign, Martial had a tumultuous time at Old Trafford under Jose Mourinho. The ordeal culminated this past summer with Martial asking to leave the club and Mourinho all too happy to let him. Though Manchester Evening News writer Samuel Luckhurst says otherwise.
That my friends is a crock of shit. Mourinho can claim it was Martial who wanted to leave all he wants but it only got there because Jose pushed him there as hard as he could.
From the moment Mourinho arrived he treated Martial like shit. He berated him in year one. He refused to play him centrally and never played him for a full 90 minutes. In year two when Martial was having a standout year, Mourinho signed Alexis Sanchez in January, banishing Martial to the bench for the remainder of the year and costing him a spot on the French World Cup team.
Martial was essentially the rope in the tug-of-war that was going on between Mourinho and the board last summer. Mourinho wanted to sell Martial to make way for the old Ivan Perisic or the even older Willian. Neither would have drastically improved the club and both would have left them in a much worse situation long term.
Naturally, the board didn’t want to sell. Martial is only 21 and they knew Mourinho wouldn’t be here much longer. Why should he care about what the club’s situation will be in two years?
Since Martial signed he’s done nothing but produce.
Martial’s 46 goals since his debut is the joint most from any United player. Incredibly, since Marcus Rashford’s debut in February 2016, no United player has scored more than his 42 goals. The fact that Mourinho deemed neither of them good enough to be first choice forwards tells you everything you need to know about his player evaluation skills. (Turns out 21 year olds can be good!)
United have been trying to ink Martial to a long term extension all season, which to me was the number one indicator that Mourinho wouldn’t last the season. There was just no way they could offer Martial a five year contract with a straight face without saying “don’t worry, Mourinho won’t be here much longer.”
United’s long term future got a little bit better today. Now go and pay David De Gea.