Manchester United's Anthony Martial needs more confidence to be Prem's best - Nemanja Matic
MANCHESTER, England -- Manchester United forward Anthony Martial would be one of the best players in the Premier League if he had more confidence, according to Nemanja Matic.
Martial has scored four goals in his last three league games including the winner in the 2-1 victory over Everton at Old Trafford on Sunday.
Jose Mourinho said afterwards that the Frenchman is finally starting to reach the standard expected of him at United and Matic believes the only thing that has stopped the 22-year-old from reaching his full potential is confidence.
"Anthony is a great player and he needs to understand that," said Matic. "He needs more confidence.
"He is still young and I think if he continues to score in the next game he will get that. If he reaches his top level he can be one of the best players in the league for sure. Sometimes I don't think he understands how good he is. Sometimes he is quick, he is good with the ball, he can run.
"He has everything that a Manchester United football player needs. Sometimes I don't think he understands that. If I had his ability with the ball and I was as quick as him then I wouldn't pass to anyone and I would score every game!
"To be serious, he does need more confidence and this comes with results."
Martial has struggled to establish himself as a first-team regular under Mourinho and was occasionally axed from the matchday squad last season.
After slipping down the pecking order following Alexis Sanchez's arrival in January, he has started seven of United's last nine games in all competitions and Matic has praised the way the former Monaco man has won over his manager.
"When you don't have results it is very difficult for players to have that high confidence," he said. "If we can get results over the next few games and improve as a team he will show that he is very important for us.
"The manager speaks with him about it. I have told him once. But he is a great person and a great guy and I am happy for him that he is scoring. It is great.
"The quality is there, confidence is there now and he just needs to be more consistent. I am glad we have him in the team. In football and in life you have difficult times and you have to get back on track and that is exactly what he is doing."
Martial's upturn in form has coincided with Romelu Lukaku's barren run in front of goal that extended to nine games after the Belgian came on for the final 25 minutes against Everton.
After scoring 27 goals in his first season at Old Trafford, Lukaku has found the net just four times in 14 games this season but Matic believes another purple patch is around the corner.
"He is a great player for sure," the Serbian said. "He has scored a lot of goals for United so I don't see any problems for him. He's a great guy who works hard and works for the team.
"Sometimes he doesn't get the goals but he is still working for us. He will start to score again soon. I believe that."