Manchester United is keeping an eye on Brighton’s Evan Ferguson, since Anthony Martial is expected to be released next summer.
The Frenchman’s contract expires at the conclusion of the season, but the club has the option of extending it for another year. However, after an injury-plagued 18 months, Martial is no longer the striker who sparked excitement when he first joined the club in 2015.
In fact, Martial has only scored 17 goals for United in the last three seasons, despite spending part of that period on loan at Sevilla.
Even after spending £72 million on Rasmus Hojlund this summer, Ten Hag is still looking to strengthen his offense. And few strikers on the market are garnering as much attention as Ferguson.
The story of the 27-year-old’s last season at Old Trafford was marred by injury. He appeared in 29 games, scoring nine goals and giving three assists while missing 27 due to injuries.
It’s becoming a recurring problem for Martial, and Manchester United’s tolerance with him has surprised many. The frontman joined the club in 2015, although he has struggled with constant fitness issues.
Martial joined United from Monaco as a 19-year-old in 2015, for an initial sum of roughly £36 million. With add-ons, that value grew to roughly £45 million over time.
The Frenchman has appeared in two of United’s first three Premier League games this season but has yet to score. He scored six goals in 21 appearances last season despite missing substantial time due to injury.
Erik ten Hag did not sell Martial in the summer, yet the Daily Mail claims the club would have considered letting him go if concrete interest from a Saudi Pro League club, or anything similar, had materialized.
The 27-year-old recently celebrated his eighth year at Old Trafford, but aside from a 17-goal haul in the 2019/20 Premier League season, he hasn’t exactly reached the lofty heights that United fans anticipated he would.
According to Manchester Evening News writer Samuel Luckhurst, United have a one-year option to extend Martial’s contract, which expires in 2024. However, the club are yet to determine whether to do so and may release him if his stagnation continues.
After missing the first several months of the calendar year due to injury, Martial has scored four goals in all competitions in 2023. The Frenchman was defended by Ten Hag for his performance in the recent 3-1 defeat to Arsenal, with the United boss describing it as ‘very good’.
The future seems uncertain for Martial and right now it seems only consistent performances can keep him at United next season.