Anthony Martial earns France recall after nearly a year out

MARSEILLE, FRANCE - JULY 07: Anthony Martial of France looks on during the UEFA EURO semi final match between Germany and France at Stade Velodrome on July 7, 2016 in Marseille, France. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

France manager Didier Deschamps has recalled Anthony Martial to the national team ahead of their Euro 2020 qualifiers this month.

The Manchester United forward last featured for France in a 3-1 friendly win at Russia in Saint Petersburg on March 27.

Since then, Martial has missed Les Bleus’ triumphant World Cup campaign over the summer and the last three international breaks as well.

But the 23-year-old’s superb run of form under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at United since December has been hard to ignore with Martial cutting a rejuvenated figure.

The former AS Monaco star has contributed towards five goals in his 10 appearances since Solskjaer’s arrival in December and appears to re-established himself as a key member of the United squad after struggling under Jose Mourinho.

Martial’s change in fortunes at Old Trafford even convinced him to surprisingly commit his long-term future to United by signing a new five-and-a-half-year contract in January, despite being expected to leave.

In an interview at the Laureus World Sport Awards in Monaco last month, Deschamps even hinted that Martial could be in-line for a France call-back based on his recent performances for United.

“All players can have a period when they are less successful on the pitch,” said Deschamps, via the Daily Mirror.

“It’s certainly related to confidence, it can also be related to the relationship they have with their coach.

“Now Anthony Martial is back in a very, very good level. He’s often decisive in matches.

“He is a player who was with us at Euro 2016 and although he was not there for the World Cup he is one of the players we regularly follow.

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“He is a young player who is gaining maturity also because he started very early in Manchester United and with French national team too.

“There are always difficult moments but in terms of potential, he has everything you need to be at the highest level.”

Now the France boss, who had to abandon plans to recall Martial in November due to injury, has indeed gone ahead and named him in his squad for the upcoming international break this month.

Manchester City defender Aymeric Laporte, who accused Deschamps of leaving him out of the France squad due to personal reasons, has been left out once more.

Meanwhile, Barcelona forward Ousmane Dembele has also been omitted due to a hamstring injury he sustained in their 5-1 Champions League win over Lyon on Wednesday.

France will first take a trip to Moldova in Chisinau on March 22 before playing host to Iceland in Paris three days later.