Manchester United and France international Anthony Martial has opened up about his relationship with Jose Mourinho. Martial never saw eye to eye with the ‘Special One’ at Old Trafford, he told in an interview recently. The 2 have been at poor terms from the very beginning of the season Manchester United sacked Jose. His desire for more game time and acceptable position at Manchester United and Jose’s reluctance ultimately compromised their player-manager relationship. The Portuguese was eventually sacked in December 2018.
Jose Mourinho and his Mind Games…
Jose Mourinho is a manager known for his mind games. His approach to player developments is primarily intrinsic motivation, rather than the extrinsic counterpart. Naturally, the players who’ve really developed under him value him as a personal trainer and friend rather than a gaffer. Talk of Lampard, Essien or Ibrahimović, his way of handling players has gained praise from the best players of the game. His deliberate criticism to bring the best out of a player is nothing new-but seems to work fine even now. His trickery was most recently spotted at Spurs as well. “I asked him if he was Dele or Dele’s brother,” Mourinho asked Alli (who was struggling with his form then). “He told me he was Dele. ‘OK,’ I said. ‘Play like Dele.’”
However, sometimes he stretches a bit too much. The players who cannot succumb well to his ‘games’ ultimately turn against him, ousting him from almost every club every 3 years. Let’s be honest, some of his comments about absolute football stars are way out of line. His treatment to Real Madrid and Spain legend Iker Casillas is a blot to his illustrious career as a manager. He had some criticism against Benzema as well. “If I can’t hunt with a dog, I will hunt with a cat” and later added: “Karim’s playing because I have got nothing else.”
The Ugly Feud with Martial
Now let’s get back to Martial. Their feud was not much public till the pre-season friendlies. Martial, however, looked dissatisfied with his role in the squad and his game-time. The rift got ugly after Jose criticized the Frenchman for not getting back to the squad after he had become a father the second time.
While rival managers congratulated him and wished him, his manager demanded his presence and went on to show his public discontent. “I’ve seen a picture. A little Clyney! There are more important things in life than football and babies are definitely one of them,” was Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp’s reaction. Jose, however, spoke in a press conference with reluctance, “Martial had the baby, and after the baby, baby full of health, thank god. He should be here and he’s not here.”
Recently, in an interview, Martial finally lifted the lid to the rift between him and Jose. He said: “It’s true that I’d have preferred it if he’d told me directly, there’s no need to say it in front of everybody. After that, you definitely want to prove him wrong. He didn’t start me during the first few games and each time I came on, I scored. In the end, he told me: ‘You see, now you understand what I wanted’. It can get to you. You just want to show him you deserve to be on the pitch.” Jose may have created a beast out of Mctominay during his stay at Old Trafford, but his ‘way of motivation’ was clearly too much to stomach for Anthony Martial. The Frenchman is a regular under Ole and has signed a new contract promising his long-term future at the club.