Man United News and Notes: Anthony Martial, Fred, Jesse Lingard

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anthony martial

Manchester United are now off until April 4, when they’ll resume their Premier League campaign against Brighton & Hove Albion. In the meantime, we’ve got plenty of news and notes to run through. Also, for the latest transfer talk items go here and also here.

We start the news and notes segment with a look at Frenchman forward Anthony Martial, who is really struggling this season, so much so that there is potential talk of even an exit this summer.

The former Monaco man only has seven goals this season, and only two in the last 18 games, and that game was the 9-0 laugher over Southampton. It’s quite a drop-off from last term, when he had 23 scoring strikes and was one of the club’s most valuable and important players.

So where did it all go wrong? United in Focus provides this piece, “Five Reasons Anthony Martial is Failing at Manchester United.” Strong words, yes, but hey, we don’t pull punches here.

Moving on to another individual player who’s had some issues with form recently, Fred had a rough game in the club’s last outing. He was at fault for the first goal, in United’s 3-1 loss to Leicester City, which saw them crash out of the FA Cup in the quarterfinal round.

After the game Fred was racially abused online, which we covered on Monday. Having discussed those serious off the field issues in a previous post, we now look at on-the-field matters, and this post from Football 365. It’s a strong examination, compare/contrast of Fred versus other similar midfielders in the Premier League, as well as others who play his position.

The third and final player to be covered in this post is winger Jesse Lingard, currently on loan to West Ham United. Lingard has responded to critics, who believe he puts too much time and effort into his social media accounts, thereby distracting him from his real job, playing football.

jesse lingard

Roy Keane, while doing punditry work after a match a couple years ago, called Lingard a very well paid professional Instagrammer, although that knock was more about Lingard’s not being played, despite having a high salary.

“I feel for me that my things off the pitch… that’s just me as a person, that’s my character, it’s my personality,” Lingard said. “I like to interact with my fans and let them see what I’m doing. I’m not doing anything untoward.

“I’m still doing my things when I’m on the pitch and really training hard so as long as I can keep that focus and consistency through to the end of the season hopefully I can go to the Euros.

jesse-lingard

“I’m just about character, you know relax, have fun and play with a smile on my face but when it comes down to football, you know I’m 100% there, 100% working hard for my team in training and on match days.”

Lingard does seem to have found new life with the Hammers, so that’s a positive for all involved.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank, partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” has regularly appeared in WGNSports IllustratedChicago Tribune and SB Nation. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

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