Jose Mourinho has revealed the reason behind Anthony Martial's recent upturn in form at Manchester United.
The relationship between player and manager has regularly been a talking point throughout the pair's time working together at Old Trafford and looked only to be resolved with speculation Martial would leave the club during the summer transfer market.
Mourinho confirmed that he was forced to fine Martial in the eary stages of the 2018-19 campaign following the Frenchman's decision to leave the club's pre-season tour of the United States.
Martial was subsequently left out of Mourinho's first-team plans and a move away looked increasingly likely, though his sparkling form in recent weeks has seen an unexpected change of heart from his manager.
Five goals in the forward's last six United appearances has seen Mourinho call for his player to be rewarded with a new contract, while supporters named Martial the club's October Player of the Month.
And Mourinho has explained how he's worked with Martial - who has also earned a recall to the France squad - to bring the best out of him in recent weeks.
“I never gave up,“ Mourinho told the club's official website. ”I never gave up my feelings that this was the right way for him, even if he had to go through difficult moments.
“I knew that for him to become a really top player, he needed to overcome some barriers that I put on the road for him. It is up to his talent, because he has phenomenal talent.
“It was just a question of him understanding what a top player is because there is a big difference between a top talent and a top player.”
United travel across Manchester this weekend to take on Pep Guardiola's City in a highly-anticipated derby clash.
Mourinho's side sit nine points behind their rivals going into the fixture, having already lost to Brighton, Tottenham and West Ham.