Paul Pogba is one of the best midfield players on the planet and will be worth the world record transfer fee when he completes his move to Manchester United, according to former Red Phil Neville. Neville, who won the treble with United as a player and worked under David Moyes as a coach, believes Mourinho has identified the right man to complete his squad and, if that proves to be the case, the question marks surrounding the huge fee will answer themselves. Sky Sports News HQ are reporting that Pogba’s £100 million transfer is close to being made official and will be announced once the midfielder returns from his extended holiday in the United States.
The record-breaking fee proposed for Pogba has raised plenty of eyebrows in recent weeks, not least because United allowed the Frenchman to leave Old Trafford in 2012. Pogba left as a fresh-faced 19-year-old but four years and four league titles later, he will return to United as one of the most talented players in world football, to the place where he was always meant to realise his immense potential. All it will take to bring him back is a fee so large it will dwarf the £85million Real Madrid paid for Gareth Bale in 2013. Is Paul Pogba really worth £100 million? Phil Neville says yes. Speaking to Sky Sports News HQ, he said:
“I think so. I think you are getting one of the best midfield players in the world.
“I think you are getting someone who is not going to dominate a game on the ball like a Xabi Alonso or a Paul Scholes but is going to go from box to box.
“His physicality is always something that has stood out. Even when he was younger at the academy at Man United, he was always bigger than everybody else, he was always quicker than everybody else, he was always more powerful.
“He will give the Man United midfield that power and that stature that I think they have missed for the last two or three seasons.”
It is that power and stature that Manchester United are going to need if they are to finally end three years of mediocrity and challenge for the Premier League title again. Leicester City’s remarkable title success prompted change at almost every club, with managerial replacements and big money signings across the board. The new season is likely to be the most competitive Premier League we’ve ever seen, with seven teams (including champions Leicester) vying for the top spot. Neville is expecting an open title race, with many of the elite clubs looking to return to the top of the table after an underwhelming 2015/16. Speaking about the forthcoming season, the former United defender said:
“Seven is probably stretching it. I don’t think there will be seven [teams fighting for the title] but I do think there will be probably three, four, maybe five.”
“I think this Premier League, this season is probably going to be the best on and off the pitch because you have got the head-to-heads with the managers and obviously the 11 versus 11 on the pitch.
“Teams are recruiting well. The financial backing is there to go out and get the best players in the world.
“If you look at Man United as an example, to go from fifth to being a Premier League winner is difficult but the recruitment that Jose [Mourinho] has done already suggests they will be challenging for the title.
“It looks like Pep [Guardiola] at Man City is just beginning to flex his muscles in the transfer market so they will be there or thereabouts.
“So I think Man United, Man City and I think Liverpool will be there or thereabouts. As a Man United fan, Jurgen Klopp worries me a little bit. He is a good manager.
“And I have got a sneaky feeling for Tottenham again. I am a massive fan of Pochettino. He is doing the right things there. He has got a stable, solid squad and I think they will continue to improve.”
Objectively speaking, is Paul Pogba worth £100million? Who knows. The better question is; will Paul Pogba improve Manchester United? The answer is an undoubted yes. Neville is right; he’ll bring a physicality and presence to the midfield that has been lacking for many years now. Beyond pace and power, Pogba will also bring superb technical ability, an eye for goal and good quality with his final pass. No player provided more assists in Serie A last season than Pogba. So if it’s for all that then yes, he might just be worth such a remarkable transfer fee.