Manchester United will hold off on making a decision on Paul Pogba’s future until at least the summer, after his recent contributions – including a match-winning stunner against Fulham – have helped put them in contention for the Premier League title.
The France midfielder’s number looked up as recently as December, when agent Mino Raiola infamously declared his time at Old Trafford ‘over’, and it was then predictably reported that Juventus had renewed their interest in bringing him back to Turin.
But Raiola’s suggestions that Pogba is no longer committed to the cause have conflicted with his performances: he has since produced some of his best football, curling in a stunning left-footed winner at Craven Cottage during the week.
That came a week and a day after he netted a winning goal against Burnley, and he has started each of their last five matches – a run of games that has seen United pick up 13 points and race into a lead at the top of the Premier League table.
It was reported shortly after the new year that they had ‘accepted’ the possibility of Pogba moving on, but their recent improved fortunes have them re-evaluating their position, and The Mail now say that any decision over his future has been deferred until the fate of the title has been decided.
They will then hold talks over whether Pogba will extend his second spell at the club beyond 2022, or whether he will move on to the likes of Juve, PSG or Real Madrid, as he enters the final year of his deal.
It is heavily inferred that Pogba’s stance on where his future lies could depend on whether United get the title over the line. That stands to reason – he has frequently spoken about his desire to win ‘the big stuff’, and adding a Premier League title to their trophy case would prove that United can deliver on those ambitions.
“Football and playing for Manchester United is not easy, it will never be easy, but it makes the victory prettier and more beautiful when we get through a tough time, then we get through this,” he said following their Carabao Cup defeat to Manchester City.
“It is beautiful and you get the emotion. That is all we want. That is what the fan wants, that is what the team wants, everyone wants this. The club is built on winning and big things, so that is all we want to get – the big stuff.”
In terms of interest from elsewhere, it has been reported that Mauricio Pochettino wants to build his PSG side around the 28-year-old, but if his current form keeps up, then they will have stiff competition – from United and otherwise.