Jose Mourinho has fired a powerful message of warning to Paul Pogba after the Frenchman was stripped of the vice-captaincy this week.
The midfielder hit out at Manchester United’s approach during their 1-1 draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers last weekend and was subsequently told by Mourinho that he would never wear the armband again.
Footage emerged the next day of Mourinho having a frosty dispute with Pogba on the training ground over an Instagram post he sent out during Man United’s defeat to Derby County in the League Cup.
Speaking at a press conference, the 55-year-old stressed that nobody was bigger than this club and hit out at Pogba for his attitude.
JOSE MOURINHO has warned Pogba that no player is bigger than Man Utd
“He's a player like the others, no player is bigger than the club and if I'm happy with his work he plays if I'm not happy he doesn't play,
“Manchester United is bigger than anyone and I have to defend that.”
— Neil Custis (@ncustisTheSun) September 28, 2018
To see Pogba publicly criticising his team’s playing style was somewhat shocking. What he said was right, striking at the very core of United’s problems on the pitch, but whether he should have said what he said is another question altogether.
Some of his earlier comments back in August and during the international break have not helped to calm the storm either. But to call him the main protagonist – the cause – of United’s crisis is wrong. Pogba’s behaviour and quotes since the World Cup are, if anything, a symptom of a wider issue engendered by Mourinho. And that will continue to be the case.