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26th Dec 2016

Anthony Martial’s agent contacted about intriguing Spanish loan deal


Patrick McCarry

For the first time in a while, the leading lights in La Liga have not streaked too far ahead.

Since 2004, Barcelona have won seven La Liga titles. Real Madrid have collected three and Atletico Madrid have the other. This season, Real lead at Christmas but there is hope for the chasing pack.

With Barcelona in less than their usual all-conquering form and Atletico Madrid down in sixth, Sevilla have emerged as genuine title challengers.

Jorge Sampaoli’s men have been buoyed by recent Uefa Cup success and have won 10 of their 16 league fixtures. They are the third highest scorers in the league behind Barca and Real with 32 goals.

12 different players have chipped in with league goals but Sevilla could do with a marksman to push the top two close in the New Year. Argentinean striker Luciano Vietto is currently their top scorer, with six La Liga strikes.

To that end, Sevilla are said to be more than interested in getting Manchester United striker Anthony Martial in on loan for the remainder of the season. The club has, according to Mohamed Bouhafsi of French outlet RMC Sport, contacted Martial’s agent Philippe Lamboley.

Martial scored 14 goals in 40 Manchester United appearances [38 starts] last season but he has struggled to make a lasting impression on his new boss, Jose Mourinho.

Mourinho has started Zlatan Ibrahimovic for most big fixtures and even gave Marcus Rashford more of a chance in the starting line-up. He has played 14 times this season [10 starts] and scored only two goals.

Earlier this season, Lamboley complained to the media when Ibrahimovic’s arrival saw Martial lose the United No.9 jersey.

The player himself has admitted he was frustrated at his lack of consistent game-time but vowed to put in the hard work necessary to win a starting place back.

West Ham have been linked with a loan move for Martial but, were the French striker tempted to move elsewhere to get a regular run, a temporary switch to a side chasing La Liga glory may prove more tempting than a stint with the Hammers.