Martial fires first Man Utd hat-trick of the post-Ferguson era

Goal.com

Anthony Martial's hat-trick against Sheffield United is the first in quite a while for Manchester United as the French forward provided the first three-goal performance since Sir Alex Ferguson left the club.

The striker provided all three of his side's goals on Wednesday, leading the way in a 3-0 win over Sheffield United at Old Trafford.

Martial opened the scoring just seven minutes into Wednesday's match, firing home a Marcus Rashford assist from a tight angle to get United up and running.

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His next finish came just moments before the half-time whistle, as Martial benefitted from an Aaron Wan-Bissaka assist to fire a first-time finish that sent the hosts into the dressing room with a two-goal lead.

Finally, Martial's third came in the 74th minute from another Rashford assist, as the Frenchman chipped goalkeeper Simon Moore, who was in net to replace United loanee Dean Henderson, who was unable to play against his parent club.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer decided to remove Martial seven minutes after he completed his hat-trick, bringing in fellow forward Odion Ighalo in the 81st minute.

Martial's hat-trick was the first of his career, stretching back to his time at Lyon and Monaco before his Manchester United move in 2015.

It was also the first Manchester United hat-trick since Ferguson's departure in 2013, with Robin van Persie the last player to fire three goals in one match with the Red Devils.

Van Persie's hat-trick came in 2013, Ferguson's final year in charge, with the Dutchman's three-goal effort coming against Aston Villa as they clinched the title to send the legendary manager into retirement on a high.

This season, they sit fifth in the Premier League, level on points with six-place Wolves and two points behind Chelsea, who will face Manchester City on Thursday in their game in hand.

Next up for the Red Devils will be back-to-back matches away from Old Trafford, as Martial and co. face Norwich on Saturday before visiting Bright & Hove three days later.

After that, United will return home to face Bournemouth for their fifth game of the Premier League restart. 

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