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The engine of progress is conflict


Madame Tussauds Opens Location In Berlin
The first absolute boy
Photo by Steffen Kugler/Getty Images

Gary Neville has claimed that Anthony Martial appears to be playing at around ‘85%’ and that there is something not quite right with him. Martial isn’t the player he was in his first season at Old Trafford, that’s undeniable. In his second season he was perhaps the most disappointing forward, but this season things appear to have improved again. Perhaps learning defensive responsibilities from Jose Mourinho has unsettled and distracted him, and he is only reapplying himself after finding out he would be staying at the club for this season, at least.

Luke Shaw was again unused by Mourinho in the win against Spurs at the weekend, and at this point it would be a shock if he plays more than a few more times over the course of the rest of the season. If you can’t convince your manager that you are better than Daley Blind, then you are in trouble. Ashley Young did well enough against Spurs, but a new full-back is needed in either of the next two transfer windows.

Mourinho expects Marcos Rojo back soon, but doesn’t anticipate a return for Paul Pogba before the international break. That means that the game against Chelsea will feature either one or both of Marouane Fellaini and Ander Herrera. What a joy that promises to be.

There’s a bit of friction from Mourinho to the fans who booed some of his decisions and who haven’t - in his opinion - been giving enough support to Romelu Lukaku recently. Lukaku was on hand to assist Martial for the winner on Saturday, but he’s now without a goal in a few appearances. Sell him, obviously.

And The Telegraph wonder why Mourinho can’t go five minutes without picking a fight. It is obviously because the engine of progress is conflict. Have a lovely day.