Manchester United superstar Paul Pogba’s potential summer switch to Real Madrid could hit a snag, as his agent Mino Raiola has been hit with a three-month ban.
Manchester United have been handed a boost in their chances of retaining midfield mainstay Paul Pogba beyond this season, as his proposed summer transfer to Real Madrid has been cast under doubts, as per a report from talkSPORT.
It would be fair to say that Paul Pogba’s sensational return to Manchester United from Juventus in a club-record £89 million deal in 2016 hasn’t gone as per expectations. The Frenchman was brought back to lead the Red Devils back to the top of English football and while he has had some memorable moments, the 26-year-old has failed to deliver on a consistent basis.
Pogba’s form has been on a steep downslide in the past couple of months, which has coincided with Manchester United’s torrid run of results that saw them miss out on Champions League football for next season. During the same period, speculations linking Pogba with a switch to La Liga giants Real Madrid have intensified boundlessly.
The World Cup winner has emerged as a key transfer target for Los Blancos with their manager Zinedine Zidane being a huge admirer of Pogba’s talents. The midfielder is also believed to be keen on a switch, having previously admitted that he dreams of playing for the Madrid giants.
Real Madrid were relying on Pogba’s agent Mino Raiola to engineer a transfer in the summer window, but now their hopes of landing him have taken a hit, after Raiola was suspended for three months by FIFA.
The Italian, who represents a number of superstars like Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Romelu Lukaku, Mario Balotelli apart from Pogba was initially handed a three-month suspension by Federazione Italiana Giuoco Calcio (FIGC) who have also banned his cousin Vincenzo for two months.
It was expected that the ban would only apply in Italy, but the governing body of football, FIFA, announced that the suspension would be applicable worldwide, which has put Pogba’s supposed move to Real Madrid in jeopardy.
A statement from FIFA read: “The Chairman of the FIFA Disciplinary Committee has today decided to extend the sanctions imposed by the Italian Football Association (FIGC) on the intermediaries Carmine and Vincenzo Raiola to have worldwide effect. Carmine Raiola is suspended for a period of three months and Vincenzo Raiola for a period of two months.
“The decision of the FIFA Disciplinary Committee was notified today and takes immediate effect. For further information concerning the grounds of the sanction please contact FIGC.”
This development comes as a blow for Real Madrid, scuppering their chances of signing Pogba ahead of the next season, while boosting Manchester United’s chances of holding on to their record signing.
The Red Devils were believed to be unwilling to sell Pogba, but would have considered an offer of £160 million should he decide to force through a move away. Now with Raiola being hit with a three-month ban, it remains to be seen what effect it has on the future of the 26-year-old World Cup winner.