Anthony Martial has got his move to Sevilla on loan.
Since early December, the Frenchman and his representatives made their intention clear to leave Manchester United. Ralf Rangnick wanted him to continue at the club, but also understood his desire to look for regular game time elsewhere, and didn’t take any extra measures, like he did in the case of Edinson Cavani, to convince the striker to stay.
Julen Lopetegui, clearly more keen on Martial’s services, has managed to land his priority target after Sevilla agreed to cover his salary until June.
Sevilla are just four points behind Real Madrid, and Lopetegui has a realistic prospect of pushing for his side’s first La Liga title since 1946.
Their defence, that includes Jules Kounde and Diego Carlos at the centre, has conceded just 16 goals this season, the best record in the league. However, Sevilla’s attack is still shy of matching Real’s numbers, with both Karim Benzema and Vinicius Junior in sublime form.
Lopetegui has been insisting on bolstering his options up front, and has finally got his man in Martial to fight for the Spanish title.
The 26-year-old is a versatile attacker, at his best cutting in from left. But with Papu Gomez already thriving from the left-wing, Martial is likely to lead the line from the middle, with Lucas Ocampos on the right.
Incidentally, he will also get to link up with Erik Lamela, who controversially got him sent off when Tottenham Hotspur faced United in October 2020.
Martial’s main competition is likely to be Rafa Mir. But the Spaniard is having an underwhelming season, with just 6 goals in 20 appearances in La Liga, and has especially disappointed with his finishing. And that’s exactly where the France international would be an obvious upgrade.
Martial possess an impressive ball-striking ability and has the ability to strike from distance. He also puts the ball into the back of the net in one-on-one situations more often than not.
In addition to that, his fluidity and ability to hold the ball into the final third will further bring Gomez more into the game and will further increase the Argentine’s influence.
As long as Lopetegui manages to keep the exciting forward motivated, he is going to get goals out of him on a consistent basis.
The Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan will hope for a Martial debut as good as the one he had at Old Trafford in 2015, and even more importantly a better end than his time at Manchester.