Former Manchester United winger Adnan Januzaj has suggested that Paul Pogba has told him that he will not try to force a move from the Old Trafford club this summer. The 25-year-old now plays for Real Sociedad in Spain and is performing well there this season. Januzaj became close friends with Pogba when the pair were coming through the academy.
The due remain in contact with each other and the Belgian suggested that Pogba will knuckle down under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer after his agent, Mino Raiola has talked the talk but not walked the walk for the past year or so, always talking about his player moving on. Speaking about the Frenchman remaining at United, Januzaj said:
“I think Paul [Pogba] is staying. I am still very, very close with Paul. We have known each other since we were kids, when we both played in the United youth teams.
“Our families are also close friends and we keep in contact. That will never change.”
It would be good news for United if Pogba was happy to continue at the club. His contract is due to expire in the summer of 2021, however, a further year could be added to that contract, which was agreed when the player made his return to United in the summer of 2016, at the time suggesting that the Old Trafford club was his destiny.
This season has not been the best for Pogba, making eight appearances, scoring no goals but assisting twice, sitting much of the season out with ankle injuries, the latter needing surgery with the player ready to return to action for the delayed close of the season. The midfield has changed at the club with the addition of Bruno Fernandes.
Many United supporters, including myself, are looking forward to seeing the duo in action together in the midfield, both of whom can play advanced roles, swapping during the match to keep the opposition at bay. Pogba could return against Tottenham Hotspur on Friday, facing up against former United manager Jose Mourinho.
Januzaj still shows some resentment about being forced out of the Old Trafford club under Louis van Gaal, who managed the club from the summer of 2014 until after the Emirates FA Cup final in May 2016, being sacked by the club days after winning the first major honour post-Sir Alex Ferguson. Speaking about this tough period, Januzaj said:
“Louis van Gaal? I should not defend myself against him. The stats speak for themselves. Every time I scored or gave an assist, he put me on the bench in the next game.
“Thankfully there are people at Manchester United who did rate me. Ryan Giggs is one of the people at Manchester United who I owe so much to.
“When he was still a player, he was always giving me good advice – and I also learnt a lot from him when he was a coach. I started so young and this is what people forget. I am only 25 now.
“My best years as a player must still come. I am a skilful, attacking player who has never had any injuries. I still have 10 years ahead of me.”
Januzaj did look like the next best thing at United during David Moyes’ tenure at the club but things did not work out for him under the Dutchman, which is a shame. After being loaned to Borussia Dortmund and Sunderland, Januzaj was sold to Real Sociedad for £9 million and this season has made 22 appearances, scoring six goals and four assists.