Last night the news broke that Paul Pogba has rejected a contract offer from Manchester United and looks set to be leaving the club this summer – but is it true?
Pogba has one year left on his contract at United and rumours have been circulating that Paris St Germain are keen to sign him, although there has also been speculation that he would run his contract down and join his ‘dream team’, Real Madrid, or Juventus, next summer.
But yesterday, The Mirror claimed that ‘Pogba has rejected a new £50million contract at Manchester United and is set to leave this summer.’
‘Paris St Germain are ready to pay £45m for Pogba, who has one year left on his current United contract, but has turned down the offer of a £350,000-a-week deal,’ the report claims.
‘But the France World Cup winner and his agent, Mino Raiola, have snubbed the offer in a bid to force through the move to PSG and a new challenge elsewhere.
‘Faced with that scenario, United are not prepared to let Pogba run down his contract next season and leave next summer as a free agent.
‘But United are also not prepared to let Pogba go on the cheap and are only willing to sanction his sale if their £50m valuation is met.’
The Mirror also claims that the rejected £350,000 offer would be ‘a huge pay hike on his existing £250,000-a-week deal.’
The story has been taken up by most, but not all, of the British tabloids, however, as yet, it has not been covered in any of the main French outlets, by any of the English broadsheets or any of the independent journalists with Tier 1 reputations.
L’Equipe, Get French Football News and Le Parisien, for example, have not yet confirmed the story.
The Times, The Telegraph, The Guardian, The Independent and The Athletic, similarly, have not spoken.
And transfer gurus Fabrizio Romano and Mohamed Bouhafsi of RMC Sport, an expert in French football, also remain silent at the time of going to press.
None of this means that The Mirror’s story is not true, but it does mean that we should perhaps treat it with some caution.
The figures involved in the report also bear close inspection. According to Spotrac.com, Pogba’s current salary at United is £290,000 per week (£15m per year) and not £250,000 as stated by the Mirror.
If The Mirror are incorrectly quoting the figure associated with Pogba’s current contract, it is equally if not more likely that they could be inaccurate about the new offer.
It is also possible that an offer, either the one stated of £350k per week or one nearer to his current salary, was made and rejected as part of contract talks. This does not mean that Pogba has decided to leave United, nor that United will not increase their offer. It could just simply be a part of the negotiation process.
The fact remains that when it comes to Pogba, there is often mischief-making to be had in the media, sometimes by the papers themselves, sometimes by the clubs involved and sometimes perhaps by his agent, Mino Raiola.
Until we get confirmation of this story by some more reliable sources, therefore, it may be wise to put a pin in it and not treat it as fact just yet.