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Man Utd fans react as Martial reclaims No. 9 shirt

Manchester United: Fans react as Anthony Martial reclaims No. 9 shirt

August 9, 2019 By Emmanuel K. Budu-Annor
The Red Devils have announced their squad numbers for the new season and the French forward has retaken the shirt he originally wore.

"Martial FC" is back! Manchester United fans have reacted to Anthony Martial retaking his No. 9 shirt after the Red Devils announced their squad numbers ahead of the 2019-2020 season.

The 23-year-old Frenchman reclaimed the shirt he wore in his first season after it became available upon Romelu Lukaku's departure to Inter Milan. With Solskjaer's side failing to bring in a replacement for the Belgian striker, the impression is that the former AS Monaco starlet is in line to become the main target-man for the Old Trafford outfit this season.

In recent years, Martial has come under immense criticism for his inconsistency despite taking the Premier League by storm after his Deadline Day signing in the summer of 2015. As a budding star from the French Ligue 1 at the time, the attacker made a huge statement of intent by scoring a debut day goal in Manchester United's 3-1 win over Liverpool. He will go on to become a fans' favorite by finishing the league season with 11 goals in 31 appearance as the main striker.

Nevertheless, the arrival of Zlatan Ibrahimovic in 2016 led the Frenchman to swap the No.9 shirt for the No. 11 vacated by the retired Ryan Giggs. The number originally worn by the ex-Monaco sensation was subsequently transferred to Romelu Lukaku for the 2017/2018 season following the latter's big-money signing from Everton.

With the 26-year-old striker sealing a move to Inter Milan this week, there is optimism in the camp of Manchester United that Martial could potentially attain his best season yet, having featured in most of the preseason friendlies as the main man up-top in attack. The 23-year-old French striker is yet to surpass his 18 goal haul in his first season, ending last season with just 12 goals across all competitions.

Meanwhile, new boys, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Daniel James and Harry Maguire will also be hoping to contribute their quota to the Red Devils' rebuilding project and will don the No. 29, 21 and 5 respectively.

See below for Manchester United's squad numbers in full

1: David De Gea
2: Victor Lindelof
3: Eric Bailly
4: Phil Jones
5: Harry Maguire
6: Paul Pogba
7: Alexis Sanchez
8: Juan Mata
9: Anthony Martial
10: Marcus Rashford
12: Chris Smalling
13: Lee Grant
14: Jesse Lingard
15: Andreas Pereira
16: Marcos Rojo
17: Fred
18: Ashley Young
20: Diogo Dalot
21: Daniel James
22: Sergio Romero
23: Luke Shaw
24: Tim Fosu-Mensah
26: Mason Greenwood
28: Angel Gomes
29: Aaron Wan-Bissaka
31: Nemanja Matic
36: Matteo Darmian
37: James Garner
38: Axel Tuanzebe
39: Scott McTominay
40: Joel Pereira
44: Tahith Chong.


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