Martial’s Utd form rewarded with France call-up
Manchester United forward Anthony Martial has been recalled by France coach Didier Deschamps, after scoring five goals in his last four Premier League appearances. Martial, 22, has not featured for France regularly since the European Championship on home soil in 2016, although he did start the 3-1 friendly win away at 2018 World Cup hosts Russia in Saint Petersburg in March.
“Anthony has had good times in blue but also some difficult, particularly at club level,” Deschamps told a news conference after he unveiled his latest squad. “What he does with Manchester United is close to what he is capable of, both in terms of his investment and efficiency.
“Anthony is a young player who is in the process of acquiring, I hope, a certain level of maturity — his potential is incredible. He does not always show it consistently, though.
“Anthony’s concentration wavers, which suggests that he only involves himself at certain times. He is still young but has already done plenty. It depends on him but there is a lot more to come and he has been showing more over the past few weeks with his club. At times, it is not enough, and Anthony has to battle with that — it is in his nature. He needs to go up a level to be consistent over the course of a season and then multiple seasons.”
Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane has been passed fit for inclusion, so Manchester City’s Aymeric Laporte remains absent, but Crystal Palace’s Mamadou Sakho has kept his place with Barcelona’s Samuel Umtiti still injured. With Thomas Lemar also absent, Barcelona’s Ousmane Dembele, as well as Martial, have been preferred to Arsenal’s Alexandre Lacazette, while Lyon’s Tanguy Ndombele has kept his place in midfield.