Anthony Martial looks the part after debut goal for Manchester United

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Anthony Martial's doubters will think twice next time they try to criticise the Frenchman following his emphatic debut goal for Manchester United as their new no.9 on Saturday.

Former Arsenal man Ray Parlour was one of Martial's many critics and had said earlier in the week that the 19-year-old would be a ‘miss’, rather than a hit, because of his extortionate fee, but it only took the youngster 21 minutes after his introduction in the second half to quash such doubt.

Martial’s goal in the 86th minute clearly showed that he has potential - he was calm and collected when he surged past Martin Skrtel and slotted past the hapless Simon Mignolet, reminiscent of Thierry Henry, whom he's often been compared to of late.


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The fans' celebrations were a sign of relief rather than joy. They were fully aware of the pressure heaped upon Martial's shoulders as the most expensive ever teenager and couldn't have asked for much better for him than a debut goal, especially one of such quality.

Such pressure has proven too much for past players, with Andy Cole, Dimitar Berbatov and Radamel Falcao all having taken their time to score their coveted first goal - a category Martial has officially excluded himself from.

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Other United greats, on the other hand, have marked their debuts in style, much like the former Monaco man. Ruud van Nistelrooy and Robin van Persie scored braces, Wayne Rooney scored a hat-trick, and Cristiano Ronaldo was a box full of tricks on their respective first appearances.

It's still only early days but, should Martial keep his head down and play it cool, there will be plenty more goals to follow, with Wednesday's clash with PSV Eindhoven in the Champions League a decent opportunity.

The signs are good for Martial. The challenge now is to deliver the goods on a regular basis, rather than sporadically. Louis van Gaal has already asked the fans not to expect too much because of his age, and indeed they shouldn't, but with the right care and guidance United's faithful will be quietly expecting to have a star on their hands.

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