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Alan Shearer’s Nicolas Anelka comparison does not bode well for Anthony Martial

Alan Shearer has compared Anthony Martial to fellow Frenchman Nicolas Anelka but it’s not a comparison the Manchester United forward will be particularly pleased by

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Alan Shearer has likened Anthony Martial ‘s attitude to that of Nicolas Anelka – the French forward dubbed “Le Sulk”.

The Manchester United striker has shown glimpses of his undoutbed talent since making the £36million switch from Monaco to Old Trafford in 2015, but has ultimately failed to fulfil his potential.

Martial has fallen further out-of-favour in recent months and didn’t even make new interim manager Ralf Rangnick ‘s first matchday squad as the Red Devils beat Crystal Palace 1-0 in the Premier League on Sunday.

This season, the 26-year-old has only found the net once in a 1-1 draw with Everton back at the beginning of October, in his last league start for United.

Anthony Martial has fallen out of favour at Manchester United and didn’t even make Ralf Rangnick’s matchday squad on Sunday
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Amid suggestions the Frenchman could move on in the January transfer window with speculation surrounding his future, former Premier League great Shearer criticised the forward’s attitude as he drew comparisons to surly former Arsenal and Chelsea striker Anelka.

“Do you think, when you look at his attitude, you see a bit of Martial in him?” Shearer asked of Anelka on the Match of the Day: Top 10 podcast, to which Gary Lineker replied: “Bit moody?”

Shearer continued: “I don’t mean this as a comparison ability-wise, Anelka was a lot better, no doubt about it.”

“Martial has a lot of ability,” Lineker responded.

“I know he does,” Shearer said. “But I don’t think he has as much as Anelka.”

One-time Golden Boot winner Anelka netted 125 times in 364 Premier League appearances during spells with six different clubs, which also included Liverpool, Manchester City, Bolton and West Brom.

The Frenchman was given the nickname of “Le Sulk” back in 1999 while at Arsenal as fans turned on him over his perceived lack of enthusiasm and saw his career shrouded in controversy following a number of high-profile bust-ups with the French national team in particular.

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Nicolas Anelka was dubbed “Le Sulk” during his time at Arsenal for his lack of effort

Martial, who has also been criticised for his lack of emotion and effort, has only found the net five times in 29 Premier League appearances over the previous two campaigns having hit 17 goals in 32 league outings during a stellar 2019-20 season.

Addressing his decision to omit the Frenchman from his first matchday squad on Sunday, the recently-appointed Rangnick stated: “The team did well against Arsenal, especially in the second half.

“As everyone was fit and available, there was no reason to change the XI.

He added: “Jesse and Anthony indicated after training [yesterday] that they didn’t feel well, they felt pain. That’s the reason they are not in the squad.”

Former Premier League great Alan Shearer compared Martial’s attitude to that of Anelka
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Alongside a couple of niggling injuries, Martial’s current campaign has been hindered by United’s summer signings.

Both Cristiano Ronaldo and Jason Sancho joined the club to provide competition in attacking areas, in addition to Marcus Rashford, Edinson Cavani, Mason Greenwood and the returning Jesse Lingard, who spent the second half of last season on loan with West Ham.

It now looks as though Martial’s future may lie elsewhere with a number of clubs from around Europe reportedly showing interest, perhaps most notably, Italian giants Juventus, who are believed to have included Martial’s name on their transfer wishlist.

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