Manchester United striker Anthony Martial has brushed off comparisons with Thierry Henry following his blistering start to life in the Premier League. The former AS Monaco forward, who was likened to the Arsenal legend, has admitted that he has "everything to prove" before being compared to the Premier League great.
The 19-year-old forward has taken to the Premier League, like a proverbial duck to water, and has already dispelled initial doubts with four goals in his first six appearances for the Red Devils. Louis van Gaal heaped praise on the youngster and is confident that he will keep his feet on the ground despite all the attention.
"I know this is a very great player who is a legend in England. I do not think we have the same characteristics. Thierry Henry is Thierry Henry. I still have everything to prove. By continuing to work, I will try to reach his level but I am still very far off," Martial said, as quoted by the Guardian.
Martial moved to United from the Ligue 1 club for an initial fee of £36m ($54.8m), but it is claimed the deal could potentially rise to £57.6m ($86.4m) depending on appearances and the success he achieves on the pitch during his time at Old Trafford. The former Lyon youth team star has now revealed that it was a phone call from the Dutch manager that convinced him to make the move, after initially being told that he was "untransferable".
The player is going to be under intense scrutiny each time he enters on the pitch due to the hefty fee the club paid to secure him. But the French striker has claimed that the attention does not bother him, as he is only focused on playing football for the 20-times English champions.
"Basically, I was told 'untransferable' so I thought of staying in Monaco. When I knew about the offer, I did not hesitate a second and it was done quickly. I really wanted to continue to play in the Champions League. Van Gaal called me and spoke to my mother who did the translation. When I arrived in Manchester I met him, we discussed at length and it was done quickly," the French international forward explained.
"It did not bother me too much [the hefty fee paid by United to Monaco]. It was more my family with all that was written in the newspapers and what was said. I was just in a hurry to go to Manchester and play football."
"I try to ignore it all. I stay in my bubble, I concentrate on the football, I work and I try to learn English as quickly as possible," Martial added.