Paul Pogba admits Jose Mourinho problems but this season will need to be his best season yet…

Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba has confirmed that he has some minor issues with Jose Mourinho last season. It was tipped to be a season where the Frenchman would shine after making his return to the Theatre of Dreams after United spent £89 million on him just four years after he left the club as a free agent. Instead, despite a good start to the season, a hamstring injury which saw him on the sidelines for a number of months was a big factor in his season not being as strong as it could have been.

Pogba played against Tottenham Hotspur at the end of January, a game which United lost 2-0 with Christian Eriksen scoring in the first minute and Phil Jones giving them a second goal in the 28th minute of the match. Pogba was hauled off the pitch in the 63rd minute, along with Luke Shaw, the pair being replaced by Marouane Fellaini and Juan Mata. Pogba then saw himself dropped for the Huddersfield Town match in the Premier League, followed by the Sevilla game in the UEFA Champions League – an injury to Ander Herrera saw the Frenchman come on in the 17th minute.

There has been a lot of widespread speculation suggesting the criticism given by Mourinho and the British press will see the end of Pogba at United this summer. Something which may or may not happen this summer. It is safe to say that Pogba has not performed at the club as he would have been expected to, which suggests Sir Alex Ferguson was right to let Pogba leave the club six years ago now. If Pogba remains at the club this summer, he will need to earn the plaudits, which will be tough for him. Reported by Sky Sports, Pogba has spoken about his season at United, saying:

“It was a better season than the previous one. It was an experience. There were some small issues with [Mourinho], but they were nothing in the end. Being a substitute, that sort of thing, it helps you to grow. I have to accept it.”

Pogba is currently playing for France in the FIFA World Cup, already qualified for the knockout stages of the tournament, playing their third group stage match, against Denmark on Tuesday, the 25-year-old had some involvement in the three goals scored by his country this summer; playing the ball into Antoine Griezmann when he won a penalty against Australia, scoring the winner in that match, which had a slight deflection, also involved in the run-up to Kylian Mbappe’s goal against Peru.

Last season, looking at Pogba’s stats in the Premier League, you would think he had a good season with only four players making more assists than him (10). He also scored six goals in the league, two of those against Manchester City in April, which saw United end the first half 2-0 down and Pogba rise to the challenge and score twice in a few minutes to level the match with Chris Smalling scoring the winner which saw United beat City for the first time that season, but still finish 19 points behind them.

It will not get any easier for Pogba this coming season. United will be expected to rise to the challenge that Manchester City have set. Finishing second, with a points tally which could have won them the Premier League title in any other season shows improvement but not the improvement that was needed. City will be full of confidence ahead of the new season with the media praising them and suggesting that they are something they are not, yet anyway. Pogba will need to hit the ground running. I think he knows that.

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copyright: JW

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