Anthony Martial is close to agreeing a new five-year contract at Manchester United, despite an ongoing feud with manager Jose Mourinho.
The Times reports that Martial was offered the new deal by United’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward, who is going against Mourinho’s wishes by tying the Frenchman to a long-term contract.
This news further exposes the divisions at Old Trafford. Martial is reportedly confident that he can outlast Mourinho, who is coming under intense pressure as United’s off-field problems are translating into poor performances on the pitch.
United have lost their last two Premier League fixtures against Brighton and Tottenham, and defeat to Burnley next Sunday will ramp up the pressure on Mourinho even further.
Martial featured against Brighton but was left on the bench for United’s opening game against Leicester and was dropped from the squad completely in Monday’s 3-0 defeat to Spurs. Mourinho criticised and fined Martial for taking an extended leave of absence from United’s US tour during the summer to be with his partner during and after the birth of their son.
Mourinho was happy to use Martial as a bargaining chip in his attempts to sign a central defender, but Woodward stepped in to prevent this from happening.
It is believed that the offer on the table would be four years at first, with United retaining an option to a further 12 months after that if they so wish.
Martial joined the club from Monaco in 2015 and has since made 137 appearances, scoring 36 goals.