Jamie Redknapp claims Paul Pogba would do much better under Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola than he has under Jose Mourinho at Manchester United
In a discussion during The Debate at Sky Sports, pundit Jamie Redknapp opined that Paul Pogba would be better suited to the footballing philosophy of Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola, claiming Jose Mourinho is failing to bring the best out of the French midfielder at Manchester United.
Pogba has been one of the most influential figures for Manchester United since moving from Juventus in a then-world record transfer in the summer of 2016. The Frenchman had initially made a sluggish start in his second coming at Old Trafford after admittedly snubbing Real Madrid and Barcelona, but as the season wore on, he began to find his feet.
At the start of the current campaign, Pogba had established himself as the Manchester United talisman, running the show from midfield as Jose Mourinho’s men initially dominated most teams in the Premier League. Over the last couple of months though, his influence has waned, with sides starting to find a chink in his armour.
In his last two starts, Manchester United have produced dismal performances, and lost each game, reminiscent of the displays of the player himself, which suggest just how a slump in Pogba’s form affects the second-placed side. His poor performance in the first of those game also saw Mourinho dropping the France international.
The latest saw Manchester United suffer a shock 1-0 defeat at the hands of Newcastle United, with Pogba being subbed off early once again. The Frenchman cut a dejected figure on the bench upon being taken off as the Mourinho’s men fell 16 points adrift of Manchester City, managed by his nemesis Pep Guardiola.
“Paul Pogba has more in his DNA to be up there, create, try to do some skills.” 💬 pic.twitter.com/eN4EOQWxy6
— utdreport (@utdreport) February 12, 2018
And Sky Sports pundit Jamie Redknapp believes it is Guardiola and his footballing philosophy that could bring the best out of Pogba, claiming that Mourinho is playing him out of position in a two-man midfield instead of a trio, a decision that the Manchester United boss has often been criticised for.
“I think Mourinho has a big responsibility with him, it’s his job. Everyone expects him to be this big confident player, but I think deep down he needs to be loved. Taking him off against Tottenham, that’s not how you’re going to get the best out of him. You can see at Newcastle, his confidence was really low.
“I’m not saying you need to pander to him but I don’t see a situation where Pep Guardiola would do that. If he was playing at Man City, he would be one of their star performers. I just don’t think that Jose Mourinho gets the best out of him.
“Pep’s the sort of manager who would bring him on, but with Mourinho it almost feels like he’s taking him on. This isn’t a kid he’s dealing with, he’s one of the biggest assets in world football.
“Pogba has been asked to do two roles and I don’t think you can, unless you’ve got [N’Golo] Kante and [Eden] Hazard and you roll them up into one, and create that player who will probably cost you around £500m. They don’t exist now. It’s not to say he can’t perform in a different position as he’s a world-class player, but you should play your best players in their best positions.”
Indeed, Pogba seems to be at a crossroads in his Manchester United career at the moment, and it seems to be up to Mourinho to get the best out of his star player to also oversee an improvement in fortunes for Manchester United, either by altering the formation slightly, or put an arm around the Frenchman’s shoulder, like many believe Guardiola would.