Solskjaer used Ronaldo’s name to convince Martial extend the contract
Manchester United forward Anthony Martial can score more than 20 goals a season and should develop his career by emulating Cristiano Ronaldo, manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said on Friday.
Martial, who extended his United deal until 2024 on Thursday, has scored 10 goals in all competitions this season, only seven short of his career-best tally of 17 in his debut season at Old Trafford in 2015-16.
When asked if Martial could score more than 20 goals a season, former United striker Solskjaer replied: “He has the capability.”
“I’d like him to make a few more runs in behind. He doesn’t miss chances… Those five or six extra goals that I used to do with tap-ins, by making those runs, go a long way.
“He’s a fantastic finisher, so he needs to get more chances. I keep telling him you need to read and sniff whether there’s going to be a chance.”
Solskjaer said Martial should look to model his career on Ronaldo, who scored 42 goals in all competitions in his penultimate season at the club to pick up the Ballon d’Or award in 2008.
“That’s up to any player if you make a decision on how to develop your own career. You talk about Cristiano’s career, what he’s made, how he’s got there… Cristiano was the best,” Solskjaer said.
The Norwegian confirmed Paul Pogba, who picked up a knock in Tuesday’s 2-2 draw with Burnley, was fit for Sunday’s Premier League trip to Leicester City while Martial could return after missing the last game due to injury.
“We’ve not had a proper session since the game so hopefully both of them can get through that. Anthony will do some rehab work but I would imagine he will be involved,” Solskjaer added.
REUTERS/Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru Editing by Keith Weir