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Has Paul Pogba turned a corner at Manchester United?

When Paul Pogba arrived back at Manchester United in the summer of 2016 for a world record fee of £89 million, pundits and United fans alike thought that the Frenchman would become one of the best midfielders in the world.

Unfortunately, it hasn’t necessarily worked out that way and he has struggled with his form and consistency, until recently. His recent performance against Manchester City in last weekend’s important derby showed just what he can do and begs the question, has he turned a corner at Old Trafford, and will we now see the best of him?

The Frenchman left the club back in 2012 on a free transfer after Pogba thought he should be getting more game time than he was receiving from then boss Sir Alex Ferguson. After four successful years in Italy where he was hailed as future Balon d’Or winner Pogba returned to Old Trafford, saying:

“This is the right club for me to achieve everything I hope to in the game.”

However, since the 25-year-olds return to Old Trafford things have not necessarily gone according to plan and he has struggled to find the form that made him such a talent in Serie A. Although he won two trophies last season, the highlight coming as he was the catalyst for United’s UEFA Europa League win against Ajax, he was recently dropped for a number of important games for the Reds.

Jose Mourinho dropped the Frenchman for the recent important Champions League second-leg against Sevilla, after an apparent spat after the loss against Tottenham in January.

However, the Frenchman has returned to United in recent weeks and we have seen some of the form that he showed at Juventus and shows for his national side on a regular basis.

His best performance for United came recently against City, after he scored twice and put in a great second-half showing for the Reds, hailing Mourinho to say:

“Along with Nemanja Matic and Ander Herrera he was phenomenal against City.”

At only 25 Pogba has yet to reach the peak of his career and still has many years left to prove just how good a player he is. If he can repeat some of the form he has shown in recent weeks then we will undoubtedly become one of the best midfielders in the league. Mourinho has also said in recent months:

“Paul is a fantastic player- no doubt for me one of the most talented players in the world.”

His form since his arrival at Old Trafford has been affected by where Mourinho has asked the Frenchman to play. He has been forced to be more disciplined than what he was at Juventus and that is one of the predominant reasons why he has lacked form.

Towards the end of this season and next season, his form will depend on the freedom that Mourinho is willing to give him. In the second half against City, he was given the green light by the boss to get forward and affect the game in the final third, and that is where he clearly operates best and where United fans will see the best from him.

It is clear that Pogba has turned a corner in recent weeks. Since he was dropped by Mourinho it appears that the Frenchman realises what he is required to do. But to get the next stage of his career at Old Trafford, he needs to be allowed to express himself and hopefully, Mourinho has realised that’s where he will get the best out of Pogba.

Written by Dan Pearce

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