Jose Mourinho was quick to single out Anthony Martial for praise following Manchester United’s 2-0 win over Burnley in the Premier League.
The Frenchman, with Zlatan Ibrahimovic injured and Marcus Rashford receiving a rest, was handed a rare chance to feature at No.9 against Sean Dyche’s side.
And he didn’t disappoint, crowning an effervescent display with a wonderfully taken goal after 21 minutes and an assist for Wayne Rooney just before half time.
Mourinho, speaking after the game, dished out praise for the way in which Martial conducted himself at the masthead of attack at Turf Moor.
José Mourinho on Anthony Martial: "Today he showed attitude & appetite. We're pleased that we have a new player until the end of the season"
— Kaveh Solhekol (@SkyKaveh) April 23, 2017
“Everybody knows the qualities he has, so I’m very pleased with what he did for us.”
Martial’s return to goalscoring form after ten games, whilst important, was by no means as telling as his overall attitude against Burnley. The Frenchman has often cut a detached, sulky figure this season, unable to come to terms with the new demands being placed on him on the left hand side.
This time around, however, he was an ebullient presence, always looking for ways to inflict damage on Michael Keane and Ben Mee by smartly roaming into space and running hard all afternoon.
If this was an audition to Mourinho ahead of series of games that will require an alternative to Ibrahimovic, he passed with flying colours.