Martinez has become a fan favourite in his first year with United following a high profile transfer from Ajax. Despite having to settle in a new country, he has been among the team’s top performers, making it a huge blow when he was forced off against Sevilla.The 2022 World Cup winner was running with the ball in the closing stages of the game at Old Trafford, but suddenly fell to the floor under no pressure from an opponent, clutching his foot.Martinez was carried from the pitch by international teammates Gonzalo Montiel and Marcos Acuna, before being stretchered down the tunnel back to the dressing room.The initial concerns of a potential Achilles injury and a long-term absence were soon allayed. Instead, a fractured metatarsal was the culprit, which is a less serious problem, although Martinez still won’t play again this season.
“Everything went really well, thanks to God!” he posted on social media from his hospital bed following his foot operation this week.
“Many thanks for all of your messages. Now focusing on the recovery.”
United boss Erik ten Hag also lost Raphael Varane in the Sevilla game, with the Frenchman expected to return to action this season but still be out for a ‘few weeks’.In the space of one game, United have lost both preferred starting centre-backs. That means Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof, who last regularly played together in 2020/21 before getting pushed down the pecking order, will have the opportunity to start a run of games.Depth in that area of the pitch is potentially a worry until Varane returns. Left-back Luke Shaw has filled in admirably at the heart of the defence already this season, while reports have filtered through this week that Phil Jones has not managed to complete a single training session under Ten Hag all season due to the relapse of a longstanding knee problem.Jones isn’t part of United’s registered squads in the Premier League or Europa League.