says Anthony Martial is not yet ‘game fit’ and says he must be careful with the striker’s return to action.
The Frenchman had made just 15 appearances this season going into United’s game against Brentford at Old Trafford on Wednesday night.
The forward made his long-awaited return from injury on Sunday against Newcastle, when he emerged from the bench to make his first appearance in two months.
However, though was dropped from the starting XI against the Bees, Martial was once against selected as a substitute.
That’s despite the fact that Martial has nearly a month of training under his belt and United have missed his prowess in front of goal.
But, speaking after Marcus Rashford gave United their first Premier League win since February, Ten Hag’s revealed he has to be careful with the ‘fragile’ Martial.
Asked whether Martial is fit enough to start games, Ten Hag said: ‘No, otherwise [he would start].
‘He was an option but I don’t think in this moment he’s game fit enough to have a start.
‘Also it’s prevention. Obviously, when you see Anthony Martial’s record over the last years you have to be really careful to plan it and [even] then still he can be fragile physically.
‘I want to take the risk because I know that when he’s on the pitch he makes a great impact to our performance.’
Rashford’s strike on the half-hour mark gave United a much-needed victory to return the Red Devils into the top four.
It was the forward’s 28th goal of the season and it was enough to beat a Brentford side who had lost just once in their last 16 matches.
United face Everton at Old Trafford in Saturday’s early kick-off, though they could be without Luke Shaw after he was taken off injured during the first half.
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