Manchester United forward Anthony Martial (centre) is brought down for a penalty by Everton midfielder Idrissa Gueye during their English Premier League match. Photo: EPA/Jon Super

LONDON – Anthony Martial can become one of the Premier League's top players if he believes in himself, according to Manchester United teammate Nemanja Matic.

Jose Mourinho's men received a much-needed shot in the arm on Sunday by overcoming Everton.

Martial's delightful curling effort proved the difference in a 2-1 victory at Old Trafford, where he was crowned man-of-the-match after also winning the penalty that eventually led to Paul Pogba opening the scoring.

The 22-year-old appears to have turned a corner at United, having struggled to earn the trust of Jose Mourinho and at times endured a testy relationship with the manager.

Martial's run of four successive starts has brought four goals and teammate Matic believes the forward has the world at his feet.

“Anthony is a great player and he needs to understand that,” the United defensive midfielder said.

“He needs more confidence. He is still young and I think if he continues to score in the next game he will get that. If he reaches his top level, he can be one of the best players in the league for sure.

Anthony Martial in action for man united against Juventus at Old Trafford. Photo: EPA/Peter Powell
Anthony Martial in action for man united against Juventus at Old Trafford. Photo: EPA/Peter Powell

“Sometimes I don't think he understands how good he is. He is quick, he is good with the ball, he can run.”

Asked if senior players like himself have told Martial just how good he can be, Matic said: “The manager speaks with him about it. I have told him once.
“But he is a great person and a great guy, and I am happy for him that he is scoring. It is great.

“The quality is there, confidence is there now and he just needs to be more consistent. I am glad we have him in the team.”

Matic is also certain that out-of-sorts striker Romelu Lukaku will get back on track.

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After eight scoreless appearances for the United, the Belgium international was dropped to the bench as his former club Everton visited Old Trafford.

“He is a great player for sure,” Matic said. “He has scored a lot of goals for United so I don't see any problems for him... He will start to score again soon. I believe that.”

Agence France-Presse (AFP)