Paul Pogba: Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer relaxed over France midfielder’s future | Football News
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says he is relaxed on “media magnet” Paul Pogba’s Manchester United future…
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says he is relaxed on “media magnet” Paul Pogba’s Manchester United future despite the player entering the final year of his contract.
Sky Sports News reported in July that Paris Saint-Germain were interested in signing the Frenchman and were continuing to monitor the situation – especially if he does not sign a new contract before the end of this year.
The 28-year-old can sign a pre-contract with a foreign club in January but Solskjaer appeared philosophical on the situation ahead of his side’s opening Premier League game against Leeds United, claiming there will always be speculation around the player because of who he is.
“It’s been spoken and written about so often but every discussion I have had with Paul (Pogba) is a positive one.
“He knows what we want and hopefully it stays in the background and Paul and us will make a decision together.
“It (the situation) will always be like this with Paul – he’s a media ‘magnet’.”
Solskjaer also reiterated the club’s desire to keep Anthony Martial, who has been linked with a move to Inter Milan this summer.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if other teams target Anthony (Martial) because he’s a very good player, but I have no plans for him to play against us,” Solskjaer said of his France forward, who scored just four times in the Premier League last season.
“Anthony has come back strong, hungry and a determination to prove his fitness and quality after a difficult and disappointing last season.
“You can see that little bit of grit between his teeth again and he’s up for the challenge
“He’s a Manchester United player and we’re happy we have him and he’s proven the doubters wrong so many times.”
Varane deal not 100% done yet
One player who won’t be involved on Saturday is Raphael Varane as Solskjaer confirmed the deal was not “100 per cent done yet”.
Having completed deals for Tom Heaton and Jadon Sancho, the Old Trafford giants announced on July 27 that they had struck a deal with Real Madrid for the 28-year-old defender.
Varane had to obtain a visa and undergo quarantine before undergoing his medical, with Solskjaer saying the final aspects of the deal were not signed before Friday’s registration deadline for the Premier League.
“He’s not trained with us and all the dots over the i’s and we haven’t crossed the t’s yet,” the United manager said.
“Things happen and things take time and unfortunately with the isolation, that delayed these things.”
Solskjaer added: “It’s not 100 per cent done yet… I can’t say that he will be involved tomorrow, I can probably say he won’t be (involved) because he’s not trained with us.”
Asked what the hold-up has been and if there is any concern it will not be completed, Solskjaer said: “It always happens that there’s little things in there.
“But the big hold up was the isolation and the quarantine, of course. He’s been in Manchester now. It’ll be done soon.”
While Varane’s debut will have to wait, £73m summer acquisition Sancho is in line for his having recovered from illness.
“Jadon is going to be involved, definitely,” Solskjaer said. “He’s had a good week.
“Unfortunately, he was ill after his holiday and we’ve lost out on a few days of training with him.
“But he’s gelled really well in the group and he has looked sharper than we expected almost. He’ll be involved. I can’t tell you if he’s going to start or not, though.”
Can Man Utd bridge gap to City?
By Gerard Brand
Progress in football is by no means linear. The last time Manchester United finished second in the Premier League in 2017/18, they followed up Jose Mourinho’s ‘progress’ by dropping four places and 15 points.
The feeling this summer is in stark contrast to 2018. Mourinho brought in Fred (£53m) and Diogo Dalot (£19m) early in the summer window, but wasn’t shy in criticising the board for a lack of spending thereafter. The season started on a sour note, and Mourinho never really recovered, replaced by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in December.
For what feels like the first time in half a decade, United look to have got their targets with plenty of time to spare. Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane were signed relatively early, and Edinson Cavani committed to another year before last season was out. The powers that be at Old Trafford seem to be aligned on what the club needed to progress, and Solskjaer is a satisfied man.
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