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Martial can become world class, but must develop killer instinct – Saha

A former Old Trafford favourite has urged the Frenchman to remain ‘focused’ in order to maintain his impressive recent form

Manchester United‘s Anthony Martial has improved significantly since returning from an injury lay-off, but still needs to work on being more of a “killer” in the final third of the pitch, according to Louis Saha.

Martial notched his 15th goal in all competitions for United this season during a 3-0 victory over Watford at Old Trafford on Sunday.

The Frenchman produced a superb turn to deceive Watford’s defence before dinking the ball over goalkeeper Ben Foster, which capped an impressive all-around performance.

The 24-year-old also scored in a 2-0 victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on February 17, after making an intelligent run across the box to head home a pinpoint Aaron Wan-Bissaka cross.

With Marcus Rashford sidelined due to a back fracture, Martial has had to step up and shoulder the main goalscoring burden for United, after overcoming injury issues of his own earlier in the season.

The mercurial forward is starting to deliver the goods on a consistent basis, and Saha believes he can fulfil his world-class potential if he continues on his current trajectory.

“Martial is a talented player and has everything needed to be world class. He can score goals and build play,” the former United striker told MEN.

“He now has to be focused on things that will definitely work. It’s not just about having a style and being nice to look at it.

“He needs to be more of a killer and I think he has done that in the last few games. Definitely, since coming back from injury, there has been an improvement.

“You have to pick your moments and be decisive and I think he has done well, it’s not easy.”

Martial has received plenty of criticism for his perceived lack of effort and disinterested demeanour during his five-year spell at United, but Saha is adamant that supporters and experts have been too quick to “misinterpret” the France international’s body language.

Saha added: “Martial has been criticised for his attitude but sometimes people misinterpret things and that’s the problem with our industry.

“People don’t know who you are and what you want and they assume. I have been a victim of that sometimes, they pick on one thing and think you have a nonchalant attitude and then they start getting criticism as to why you’re not producing on a regular basis.

“The same criticism can be said of Paul Pogba. It’s something you have to accept in the industry.”

Martial is currently preparing with the rest of the United squad for a Europa League round of 32 second-leg tie against Club Brugge at Old Trafford on Thursday, which comes three days before a Premier League meeting with Everton.

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