Manchester United succumbed to a disappointing 1-0 defeat to Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium yesterday with the forwards being singled out for criticism for their lacklustre display.
TV pundit Alan Shearer has analysed why the Red Devils were so poor in front of goal. The former England striker highlighted the lack of numbers inside the opponent’s penalty box with both Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial occupying the same spaces:
“I thought they were woeful going forward. They were chasing the game, particularly in the second half. You’ve got Martial and Rashford, both who you’re looking at to get you back into the game, and neither were in the box [on occasions].”
“They can’t get the ball into the box because there’s nobody in the box. That made it easier for Bournemouth than it needed to be.”
The lack of a ‘fox in the box’ is something that has been a problem for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side this season, and it’s likely that the Manchester club will have to delve into the transfer market to rectify the issue.
While both Rashford and Martial are talented forwards on their day, neither would be described as a traditional number nine. They both drift in and out of games, and while the two have shown some superb link-up play, neither is a poacher that is likely to rack up 25 plus goals a year.