Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba is no stranger to being in the headlines for both the right and the wrong reasons.
The 28-year-old has received his fair share of criticism since returning to Old Trafford in 2016 having largely failed to deliver on the pitch.
At his best, the World Cup winner is a Rolls Royce of a player, effortlessly gliding round the field picking pinpoint passes and controlling games.
However, too often these dazzling performances are flanked with long periods of poor form, meaning you never know which Pogba will turn up.
While discussing him on The Match of the Day 10 Podcast, former Premier League winners Alan Shearer and Micah Richards made this bold comparison:
“I just remember him (Veron) being a flash in the pan, before he came to Man United you expected big things, he’s like Pogba. Pogba’s stayed longer but when you watch Pogba, you want him to do something brilliant every time and the same with Veron as well.” Richards said.
“You wanted him to score a 40-yard goal or [play a] 60-yard pass, it was just a little bit fast for him, you’ve got that ability, he worked hard, it’s consistency.”
“His ability was off the scale, wasn’t it, it’s one thing I’ve wondered. By all accounts, he worked really, was a good lad, it just didn’t work out.”
Shearer agreed, saying “”I definitely agree with the Pogba comparison. [I] think everyone looked at Veron and thought, ‘wow, what a player’.
“£28million which was a lot of money then and everyone was expecting that of him every week. Ability-wise it was in there.”
Juan Sebastian Veron arrived from Lazio in 2001 with similarly lofty expectations, due in part to the £28.1 million transfer that was the most expensive in English football at the time.
Despite making 82 appearances across two campaigns in Manchester, helping Sir Alex Ferguson‘s side to the title in 02/03, Veron could never adapt to the pace of the Premier League.
An even less successful spell at Chelsea followed, and he later returned to Italy with Inter Milan, before ending his career in his native Argentina.
While Pogba has spent much longer at United than Veron ever did, the comparison doesn’t seem completely unfair and will likely end in the same way, with United fans wondering what might have been.