Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s private text message to Anthony Martial about his No.9 shirt
Anthony Martial claims Ole Gunnar Solskjaer motivated him to hit top form by dangling his old number 9 shirt in front of him.
Martial was handed the iconic shirt when he first arrived at Old Trafford from Monaco, but he later had it stripped off him by Jose Mourinho.
The now Tottenahm boss didn’t see Martial as an out-and-out central striker and decided he’d hand the incoming Zlatan Ibrahimovic the No.9 shirt instead, handing Martial the No.11.
The young Frenchman was devastated by Mourinho’s decision, but following both the Portuguese and Ibrahimovic leaving Man United, Martial regained the No.9 shirt.
Martial told Canal+: “He [Solskjaer] sent me a message, he said ‘do you want to take your No.9 shirt back?’
“I straight up said ‘yes!’ I said yes and he told me now it’s up to you to show me [that you deserve it] every time you’re on the pitch.”
He recently said of him: “He’s definitely developing, improving and he’s enjoying his football. He’s stepped it up this season, I feel, both as an individual and more so as a team player, and physically.
“I remember there were talks about our forwards last season being the least active and there were some stats flying around but Antho is now working really hard for the team and he is a quality, quality finisher.”