Manchester United news: Jose Mourinho warns Anthony Martial his chances are running out

Martial was dropped in midweek with Mkhitaryan impressing in his stead

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The Independent Football

Jose Mourinho has warned underperforming striker Anthony Martial that his chances at Manchester United are running out.

Martial was dropped for the visit of Feyenoord in the Europa League on Thursday night, which United won 4-0, with Henrikh Mkhitaryan instead shining in the Frenchman’s role.

The 20-year-old former Monaco forward joined United in a deal that could eventually reach £58m and burst onto the scene with a stunning goal against Liverpool on his debut, one of 17 goals he scored last season.

However, he has failed to hit those heights again so far this season, only finding the net twice – one of which being a penalty in the Europa League.

Martial’s form is believed to be down to a number of circumstances, including problems in his personal life and having a lack of a summer break after his efforts with France at Euro 2016.

He is also believed to be disappointed with United moving him from the No 9 shirt to the No 11 shirt in the wake of Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s arrival just as he launched the trademark ‘Martial9’.

“You have one opportunity, you have two, you have three - if you don’t bite then somebody comes and takes the bait,” Mourinho said. “Anthony was OK for Feyenoord. I cannot play with 12 players.

“The players have to win their positions. They are friends, they are colleagues who work together every day but in the end they compete between themselves to have more chance to play. Anthony played against Arsenal. Thursday was a moment to give Mkhitaryan a chance to start.

“The way the team played last season - I’m not saying better or worse, just different - was probably more adaptive to Anthony.

“He was probably more comfortable playing that way, at that intensity, that rate of ball possession and ball circulation.

“Probably he also needs some time but in our squad, especially in these positions, we have Mkhitaryan, (Jesse) Lingard, (Memphis) Depay, (Juan) Mata, (Marcus) Rashford. These are probably the positions where we have more options.”

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