Treble-winning former-Manchester United striker has launched a defence of current manager Jose Mourinho in the face of major criticism from a variety of people.
The Portuguese boss has seen his side begin the season in nightmare fashion. The Reds have lost three of their opening seven fixtures. It’s the worst start a Man United side has ever made to a Premier League season, since the competition’s inception in 1992. David Moyes’ team in the 2013/14 campaign was equally as bad, and the Scot was sacked by April.
Mourinho took part in a subtle war with the club’s board in the summer, demanding more transfer activity. As the season has unfolded, he’s also been at war with star midfielder Paul Pogba. The Frenchman flirted intermittently with FC Barcelona in the summer, and an exit looks likely. Mourinho removed Pogba of the vice-captaincy last Tuesday after comments made about United’s style of play.
Sheringham has backed Mourinho strongly against Pogba and placed huge blame upon the midfielder instead.
He told the Weekend Sports Breakfast
“It’s a real problem he’s got here with Paul Pogba. I don’t like his demeanour from a distance,” Sheringham told talkSPORT.
“I’ve never met the man but he just doesn’t strike me as captain material, that he’s a leader in the right manner.
“If you look back in our day with Roy Keane he was very hard, workmanlike and led the way you would like your leader to.
“Pogba doesn’t give off that same air for me and that causes problems in the ranks.
“I don’t think he’s doing it how Mourinho wants him to lead.”
Sheringham backed Mourinho as the real leader and told the Portuguese that he should drop Pogba from the side.
“He [Mourinho] is the leader, he is the main man,” the former-England man continued. “There was the thing the other day where he said that ‘on the way out of the office make sure you look at the letters up there and it says manager. I am the manager and I am in charge.”
“I feel if he is not going to make him [Pogba] captain, or vice-captain, I don’t think he should be playing either, at the moment, I think he has got to set out his stall and say, ‘you sort your own mind out that you are playing underneath me and then you can come and play in my team again.’ Until he does that he shouldn’t be playing.”
Mourinho cannot afford to drop Pogba. Even though the player’s behaviour hasn’t been ideal, and everyone accepts that he can perform better, he’s still United’s best outfield player. An underperforming Pogba is better than most other midfielders in the world.