The pre-match conversation ahead of Manchester United’s defeat in Leipzig was dominated by Mino Raiola’s comments to Tuttosport that the midfielder will not sign a new contract.
Pogba did not start, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer telling BT Sport the decision was tactical.
Perhaps it was, and Pogba instructed his agent to make his comments out of frustration knowing he would not start the game.
Leaving Pogba out seemed an odd choice from a football perspective however, especially based on how poorly Nemanja Matic performed.
Pogba was the last midfielder called on in the fixture, showing where he may lie in the United pecking order.
He actually played well when he came on, and showed what an asset he can be, if you just take away the Raiola factor.
Pogba helped United get back into the game
Pogba’s pass forward helped play Mason Greenwood into position to win United’s penalty.
He then headed in Bruno Fernandes’ corner from an improbable angle, and almost forced an equaliser.
Pogba’s cross was diverted by a Leipzig defender straight at his own goalkeeper in the final moments.
The Frenchman really did seem to be putting the effort in, and it’s tough to know where we go from here in the short term.
Does he play against City at the weekend? A bench role probably beckons again with Fred returning.
Solskjaer was quoted by BT Sport after the game: “I’m not going to speak for him. But Paul is focused on doing his best for the team when he’s here. He’s working hard in training and he just needs to focus on his performances.”
While many fans did not want Pogba to play for the club again after his agent’s comments, there was some appreciation of how well he played when he came on.
He nearly dug United out of a big hole, and his efforts on the pitch at least should were respected…
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