Manchester United have completed the signing of Anthony Martial. While the fee for the 19-year-old French striker is currently under debate by the media, £36.3m raising to £58.8 seems to be the most likely. This makes Anthony Martial the most expensive teenager to ever be signed by a soccer club.
Very much looks like Martial fee is £36.3m rising to £58.8m.Can't quite fathom that personally but too many reliable sources saying it #mufc
— James Ducker (@DuckerTheTimes) September 1, 2015
The deal was announced minutes ago, but it has been in the offing for a few days now. Yesterday, it was revealed that the deal was close enough for Martial to be allowed to leave his international duty with France to complete his medical with the Manchester club. Martial will be expected to compete with Wayne Rooney and Marouane Fellaini as a striker.
#mufc is pleased to announce French forward @AnthonyMartial has completed his transfer from Monaco. #WelcomeMartial pic.twitter.com/Eohl6tMOOz
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) September 1, 2015
So what is it about this 19-year-old that caused Manchester United to drop the big bucks on him? Much is expected of Martial, who is considered one of the brightest talents in France right now. He is quick, has flair, and went on a goal scoring streak at the end of last season, notching up 9 league goals total. He has been compared to Thierry Henry and Alexandre Lacazette. If Martial is able to replicate either of those two players, this could be a good move.
That being said, it is really difficult to see this being a good move for anybody other than Monaco. They are getting a ton of money in this deal. While Martial is a good player, they can surely spend that money wisely and replace his contribution.
Martial is now facing a not only a huge step up in league, to be fair to Ligue 1, but an astronomical step up in expectation. One doesn’t simply shrug off the amount of money being spent. At the tender age of 19, any player would have trouble dealing with that level of pressure. This goes doubly for a team like Manchester United, who are in dire need of a goalscorer. Many players have folded under that amount of expectation. This will be a massive test of the young striker.
Manchester United are taking a huge risk here. Martial is very much an unknown quantity. This is a player that has great potential, but only has 72 senior appearances in soccer. In that time, he has scored 15 goals. To be fair, he’s very young and you wouldn’t expect a player his age to score a ton of goals as a senior player. But that simply underlines the problem with this signing. Manchester United spent almost £40m up front on a player that has 15 goals total in his career. We’ll be covering the deal in greater depth soon.
For the time being, Manchester United have bought a player with a great deal of potential. He can play anywhere across the front, and United will be hoping he can spark some life into their offense this season. I’ll include a Youtube scouting video for anybody who wants to see the most expensive teenager in world soccer.