Paul Pogba earned special praise from Jose Mourinho after his performance for Manchester United in their 2-1 win over Leicester.
The midfielder was helping France win the World Cup less than a month ago. He went without a pre-season but still managed to produce a fine display in the season opener.
“Pogba was a monster,” Mourinho said in his post-match press conference.
“We thought maximum [he would play] 60 minutes, but he managed more than 80.”
Pogba was handed the captain’s armband, a move which Mourinho may have decided after watching clips of the 25-year-old in the France dressing room during the tournament in Russia.
He displayed great leadership skills and it was impressive to see his maturity.
Pogba scored the opening goal of the match, converting from the penalty spot in the third minute after Daniel Amartey was penalised for a handball.
Lineker’s tweet about Pogba
Man United supporters hope it’s a sign of things to come.
His performance against the Foxes didn’t escape the attention of Match of the Day host Gary Lineker.
“Have to say…well I don’t have to but I will….,” Lineker started.
“Paul Pogba’s performance after everything that’s happened to him over the last month or two, as well as the lack of pre season training, has been truly remarkable. Superb. 👏👏”
Well said, Gary.
Pogba’s preparations for the match were disrupted by reports linking him with a move to Barcelona.
The Daily Mail claimed Pogba had informed his Man United teammates of his desire to join the Spanish outfit.
He attracted even more attention when he hid his face and used a different entrance as he arrived at the club’s Carrington training base on Wednesday.
That only served to increase the concern among the club’s supporters.
Of course, Pogba will have to perform for an entire season to silence his critics.
But the early signs are positive and this well could be the year for Pogba to show just why Man United paid £89 million for him in 2016.
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