Anthony Martial needs to follow Henrikh Mkhitaryan's example, says United boss Jose Mourinho

Anthony Martial needs to follow Henrikh Mkhitaryan's example, says United boss Jose Mourinho

Jose Mourinho has stated that Anthony Martial needs to follow Henrikh Mkhitaryan's footsteps.

Danial Kennedy

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has stated that young forward Anthony Martial needs to follow the example of summer signing Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

Needs time to improve

It has been a tough second season for the young Frenchman,after his break-out season the previous year saw him finish as the club's top scorer following his big summer move from Monaco.

Martial has only managed 557 minutes of league football this season, with just the one goal, and the Frenchman has admitted that he has become frustrated at his current situation at the club.

One player who has suffered a similar situation but has come on leaps and bounds since is Mkhitaryan, who has scored in his last three matches, and Mourinho thinks that Martial needs to follow in the Armenian's footsteps.

"Every player is different," Mourinho told SFR Sport. "I had this season a situation that was more difficult than Anthony - Mkhitaryan." 

"Mkhitaryan was completely open," he stated. "And completely understood the difference between me and other coaches he had."

"I think Anthony is very, very young - people forget," the coach admitted. "Last season Manchester United played completely differently to how we do today.”

"He was basically playing up front," the Portuguese manager affirmed. "The team had lots of passive ball possession, just waiting to put it into space for Anthony to go and score a goal."

"This season is more difficult," Mourinho added. "He needs a little bit of time to improve.”


Tough second season

It has been a struggle United's young players this season, with the likes of Marcus Rashford and Timothy Fosu-Mensah also struggling for regular game time under Mourinho.

Rashford and Fosu-Mensah have managed 22 and five appearances respectively, and Mourinho stated that it is difficult for those young players to continue their excellence into their second season.

"Rashford is head of that talent," he said. "They were in a period where they had to play they had no pressure at all."

"Nobody expected anything from them," the 53-year-old stated. "There were no senior players on the bench waiting for them to make a mistake just them."

"The choice was Rashford or Rashford. Mensah or Mensah," he coach admitted. “There were no other options, the injuries were so many."

"The situation is different this season," Mourinho concluded. "The number of injuries is smaller, the expectations about the players are higher."

Manchester United take on Middlesbrough at Old Trafford in the Premier League on Saturday, December 31 with kick-off at 3pm GMT.