Former Manchester United defender Denis Irwin expects Paul Pogba to enjoy a sensational season at Old Trafford this year.
The Frenchman made a return to Old Trafford last year for a then world record £89m after four years at Juventus and garnered early criticism amid a series of shaky performances from Jose Mourinho’s men.
But he quickly emerged as an indispensable, powerful presence in midfield largely responsible for Man United’s march to the Europa League in May.
And Irwin, following a brilliant pre-season for the 24-year-old, insisted that he would reach new heights over the 2017/18 campaign.
“I expect Paul Pogba to be a really powerful player this year,” he said.
“I expect Manchester United to challenge for the title. More consistency is needed. We drew too many [last season] and I think more goals are needed from different areas.
“Last season there was an over-reliance on Zlatan. Rashford, I think, will score more goals.”
The landscape Pogba embarks upon this month will radically differ to the one he came across when he first embarked upon last year.
No world record price tag, with the media’s focus moving towards Paris Saint Germain and Neymar; no unnecessary, beleaguering defensive duties in midfield following Nemanja Matic’s arrival earlier this week; no sudden introduction to a side under scrutiny and getting to grips with their new manager, but instead a full pre-season that saw him easily eclipse anybody.
He will emerge from the tunnel at Old Trafford next Sunday as the established centrepiece of an ever-developig Mourinho set-up. The horizon, make no mistake, is huge for the Frenchman.