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Do Manchester United need Paul Pogba?

by Sam Peoples

It may be a controversial thing to say, but Manchester United are proving that midfielder Paul Pogba is not needed at the club. No, the Red Devils are not playing well and their recent draws against Sheffield United and Aston Villa are proof of that. Don’t forget the loss to Astana in the Europa League. Yet, Manchester United were not doing that much better with Pogba in the side. Manchester United fans can wager on the team’s December matches with Bet9ja and bet on the team they believe will win the big games.

Manchester United posted a 1W-3D-1L league record with Pogba in the team before he suffered an injury to his ankle. In total, Pogba has missed 15 of 21 matches this season. For a player that cost Manchester United £89 million, the club hasn’t gotten much out of him sans a large number of replica shirts sold to fans around the globe with the footballer’s named emblazoned on them.

Pogba has scored 24 goals in 100 appearances for Manchester United in the league. It isn’t a bad return, however, just 17 of those strikes have come from open play. Pogba has added 25 assists during his time at Old Trafford.

The midfielder has actually nearing his career goals total at Juventus in a fewer amount of games than when playing in Turin.

Yet, that is a misleading statistic. Pogba joined Juventus from Manchester United in 2012 and was not thrust into the team to make a sudden impact. He was used conservatively by the Bianconeri as a host of world-class players were already on hand for the club.

Pogba’s first season saw him appear in 37 matches scoring five goals. By the time he left Juventus and arrived at Old Trafford, Pogba was expected to be the finished article and capable of pushing Manchester United back to the top of the league.

His inconsistent play saw him clash numerous times with former manager Jose Mourinho. After the Portuguese manager’s departure last season, Pogba went on a sudden scoring streak tallying 10 of his 13 strikes once Mourinho had been sacked.

Pogba’s Manchester United contract expires in June 2021. There is a one-year club option on the table but with Pogba struggling to get on the pitch and make an impact when he does, Manchester United must re-visit the possibility of selling the midfielder.

Rumours continue to persist that Real Madrid are desperate to sign Pogba. Recent reports have Zinedine Zidane and company offering out of favour midfielder James Rodriguez for Pogba. While getting Pogba out of the club and starting fresh would be a good move, adding Rodriguez who has flopped at Real Madrid and did little better at Bayern Munich on loan, would be poor follow-up. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has moved to squash Pogba transfer rumours.

Manchester United’s options in midfield are currently slim. Andreas Pereira and Fred started against Aston Villa in their 2-2 draw. Pogba’s return may not lead to the wins that some expect especially with the Red Devils claiming just one win from five league games when he was fit. If Pogba was sold in January or next summer, it is unlikely too many Manchester United fans would be upset if the club can recoup the £89m spent on him.

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