It’s impossible to ignore the buzz that Manchester United’s signing of Paul Pogba has produced. The transfer of the £89m former academy product has captured the imaginations of United fans worldwide whilst simultaneously annoying fans from all different clubs up and down the Premier League, something our fanbase is particularly keen on.
Pogba, having completed his protracted transfer in the early hours of Tuesday morning looked relaxed, happy yet above all else, sounded determined when he spoke to MUTV in his first interview since his switch from Juventus. When asked if he had a message for the fans, he replied:
“I’m back and I can’t wait to make them happy, to show them that I’m still Paul Pogba but in a different way, and that I came here not to joke but to make them happy and feel like we can win the league. That’s why I came here.”
Another perfect, honest response, which will make those enamoured with the Frenchman swoon that little bit more.
His arrival is timely; United begin their quest for their first Premier League title since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement in 2013 away to Bournemouth on Sunday afternoon, and whilst Jose Mourinho has brought several exciting players into the fold, and whilst his mere presence promises to provide a far more interesting season than his predecessor Louis van Gaal managed last year, Pogba may be required quicker than he expected he would be.
Manchester United have, by and large, struggled for fluency under Mourinho thus far, which makes sense given that his team needs to adjust to his ways as a coach, but one particular element of Van Gaal’s pragmatism stands out most; United’s lack of direction in midfield. Nowhere was this more obvious than on Sunday in the Community Shield match with Leicester City, with the duo of Marouane Fellaini and Michael Carrick perhaps United’s least dynamic pairing available.
The club have a spark in midfield in the shape of Pogba, but of course, having only begun training this Tuesday after arriving fresh from the conclusion of his post-Euro 2016 holiday, the former Le Havre player is unlikely to be at his sharpest. That’s a risk that Mourinho is willing to take, and the frequent photos and videos on the player’s Instagram account suggest that Pogba has been keeping himself fit this summer. It might be wise for Mourinho to take advantage of the excitement that Pogba’s signing has provoked, and whilst a starting berth in his side is unlikely, his presence on the bench might provide a big boost as United’s season finally gets underway.