Former Manchester City defender Danny Mills believes Paul Pogba is causing problems at Manchester United this season.
The Frenchman’s cryptic comments following Man United’s win over Leicester City led to many questioning his attitude, with Paul Ince even labelling him as a “nightmare”.
And his performance against Brighton and Hove Albion, during which he was sloppy in possession in the first half, has only attracted further anger from the footballing world.
Speaking after the 3-2 defeat on Sunday, Mills suggested Pogba was essentially rotting the club from the inside, and even managed to mention his social media tendencies despite that being totally irrelevant.
“[There has been] a lot of talk about does he stay or does he go?” he said. “I don’t think there is a particular issue between him and Mourinho. I don’t really buy into that.”
“Maybe there’s a problem between him and the football club. Who is bigger? Is he causing problems like with the way he is on social media? I think if it was Sir Alex in charge, he would be gone by now.”
We’ve seen these quotes before. We know this tone, this angle. For some, slandering Pogba in the press is their only way of staying relevant, piggybacking on the World Cup winner’s international attraction. To see it happen again and again is a strange, slightly saddening thing.
And those questioning Pogba’s attitude after the clash with Brighton are on the extreme end of this spectrum.
He was angry during the game, sure. Maybe he even threw his arms about a bit. But that is because he cares – because performances like the one we saw yesterday hurt.
And when United offered nothing after the break, it was Pogba and Pogba alone looking to drive the play forward, to get players involved, to improve the tempo. That United’s only two shots in the second half came from Pogba – a long range drive and a penalty – was telling.
After the game, he didn’t hide either, admitting to supporters that his attitude and performance – whilst still better than most – was nowhere near good enough, taking responsibility like an adult and like a captain.
Mills’ comments, on the other hand, are childish, and downright boring at this point.