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‘We need him’: Erik ten Hag admits Anthony Martial is ‘really important’ for Man Utd

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has admitted that Anthony Martial has to work on his fitness, having struggled with regular injuries in the current campaign.

The Frenchman has endured a difficult season with the Red Devils and has been out of action with four separate injuries. He is currently nursing a leg concern.

This has ruled him out of the first leg of the Carabao Cup semi-final at Nottingham Forest and Ten Hag has acknowledged that the club need him fit once more.

Speaking in his pre-match presser, Ten Hag said that the Frenchman has been unlucky with injuries and admitted that he is ‘really important’ to the way United play.

The Dutch tactician added that the club need him back on the pitch to be successful.

He told Manutd.com: “He has to work on that. In that fact I agree. He has to be more available. He can’t do nothing for it in that sense, it’s sometimes also bad luck.”

“But sometimes you don’t know also really the cause, what the reason behind it is. But when he is there, he’s really important for us because we play our best football when he is available.

“He has to be aware of that as well. If we want to be successful, we need him. And the first thing is he has to be available.”

Martial is a key part of Ten Hag’s plans

Martial has played just 700 minutes of first-team football under Ten Hag this term, but has been impressive with five goals and two assists.

Aside from his goal involvements, he has also excelled with his link-up play in the final third. He was sorely missed against Arsenal last weekend.

While Wout Weghorst was decent with his hold-up play, Martial would have been a bigger threat to the Gunners’ backline with his direct running.

He won’t play any part against Forest tonight but hopefully, it won’t be long before he makes his return.

The €15 million-rated star is running out of time to prove his credentials. If his injury woes continue, United will eventually sign a marquee striker to replace him.

Stats from Transfermarkt.com