Paul Pogba: Manchester United’s biggest mistake

Ed Angeli

We’re well over the halfway mark of the Premier League season, therefore, conclusions can be made on the world’s most expensive player, Paul Pogba. But is the Frenchman a success or flop? Not exactly a complete failure, but certainly a disappointment. Failed to stamp his mark in the big matches, and ultimately, the most expensive player’s side are still sixth in the league. Sixth! 

What’s the problem? Lack of discipline? The most fouls committed this season in the Premier League – 51 and counting – would suggest there’s a sluggishness in the Frenchman’s game that’s costing his side. Inability to read the challenge; wrong form of aggression; a sort of arrogance which he thinks he can portray – and get away with – because he’s Paul Pogba.

SEE ALSO: Manchester United are a better team without Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Sure, the Red Devil has had some real moments of magic; that chip to Zlatan Ibrahimovic at home to Leicester was stunning, as well as that pass to the Swede for the striker’s equaliser at home to West Ham. Class. But all too infrequent. Again, that strike away at Swansea, and the finish at home to Fenerbahce; brilliant. But, not match winners, not crucial in bagging three points. Simple 3-1 and 4-1 wins.

Will the former Juve man do it in an important match? Probably not. He failed against Manchester City at the start – which he was let off the hook for – then failed in both matches against Liverpool, disappointing against Arsenal, and was completely outplayed by his fellow countryman away at Stamford Bridge.

“N’Golo Kante basically bullied the most expensive player in the world”

Pat Nevin

Of course, N’Golo Kante is N’Golo Kante, and as all the sayings go around the Chelsea man go: ‘Kante could lose his virginity, and win it back,’ they genuinely seem like no exaggeration when looking at the former Leicester man’s season; world-class. What does the midfielder do differently to Pogba? He goes about his business, his football business. He’s not on his social media account prancing around with mediocrity like Jesse Lingard, he’s not hanging around the barbers dying his hair from orange to yellow and he’s certainly not creating his own Twitter emojis.

Sure, Pogba is marketable, and sure, the guy’s a laugh and the sort of bloke you’d want to go for a beer with. But if you’re the most expensive player in the world, you’ve got to just focus on your football. You can’t be getting distracted by your marketing appeal, chasing adverts for Adidas at the drop of the hat. It’s distracting, and costing him on the field.

“He may be the most expensive player in the world, but that does not count if he is spending more time on his dress style, the colours in his hair and his social media.

Paul should ask Memphis – and he will realise that being successful and reaching top level in England is only possible if you perform every week and if you dedicate everything to your career.

Memphis was heavily criticised because he found it more important to pimp his image than improve his football. He should have known that stuff on the pitch goes before anything.”

Ruud Gullit

Of course, we love some of Pogba’s off the field moments; when he interrupted Zlatan’s interview with Thierry Henry; no one can deny, it was box office. But, he can do that if he’s won the league with United, if he has more goals than Étienne Capoue, if he has more assists than Adam Lallana. He has none of those. Please, please concentrate on the football, Paul.

If he doesn’t, United should cut their loses, sell the midfielder on, and put the money towards a signing who will be more effective. We’ll give you a clue, he’s obsessed with David Beckham, and is French.

Will Paul Pogba join the list of players Manchester United let go too soon… 

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