Manchester United will be hoping to build on their positive result and improved performance against Villarreal last time out when they take on Chelsea in the Premier League this afternoon.
The Red Devils secured qualification to the last-16 of the Champions League with a 2-0 victory on Tuesday evening, providing them with a much-needed boost coming into this one.
But it’s set to be an extremely tricky test for United, with the hosts currently in imperious form and sitting pretty at the top of the Premier League table.
In his first game in charge, Carrick made some bold selection calls as he looked to inject some life back into the 20-time English champions.
And although the retired midfielder clearly had his charges well organised, some of the personnel who he selected from the off arguably didn’t justify his faith in their ability to affect the play.
One of those players who failed to grasp their chance under Carrick was Anthony Martial.
Following a hugely underwhelming 2020/21 campaign, it was hoped that the France international would return to form this term, but a change in fortunes has yet to materialise.
Against Villarreal, Martial had just 42 touches before he was brought off on the 66-minute mark, failed to have a single shot, didn’t play a single key pass and lost possession eight times, highlighting his ineffective display.
It was just the latest disappointing showing from the 25-year-old in the opening weeks of the current campaign, though, with his dismal performance against West Ham United in the Carabao Cup back in September attracting much criticism.
“His (Martial’s) positioning was, to put it simply, was god awful,” said Mike Parrott of the Manchester Evening News.
“We all saw how absurd it was to see how slow he was when he is supposed to be in his absolute prime or if not even a bit earlier than his prime. He just looked really off the mark, and technically he just wasn’t there.”
Martial has bagged just one goal and provided no assists in his nine outings this season, and with the likes of Marcus Rashford, Mason Greenwood and Bruno Fernandes waiting in the wings, Carrick must make the bold decision to axe the £250k-per-week liability for the trip to west London.