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Does Paul Pogba to PSG make sense?

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Paul Pogba‘s time at Manchester United could be nearing an abrupt end for the second time in his professional career.

And now, a club that was previously tracking the France international appears to be expressing heavy interest in the midfielder once again.

[ MORE: The latest Premier League player power rankings ]

ESPN FC is reporting that Paris Saint-Germain and Mino Raiola — Pogba’s agent — have been in contact recently over a potential move to the French capital at the conclusion of the 2017/18 season.

The report suggests that Raiola has been in talks with several other big clubs in regards to the availability of Pogba in the near future, however, a move to his native country could sweeten the deal for the 25-year-old.

The Frenchman has scored 10 league goals for the Red Devils since he re-joined the side in 2016/17 from Juventus.

Pogba has had an up-and-down relationship at Old Trafford with manager Jose Mourinho, which nearly caused a move for the attacker during the January transfer window.

Cross-town rivals Manchester City were heavily linked to Pogba at the time, however, nothing came to fruition as the Citizens went on to claim the Premier League title with several matches remaining on their calendar.

While PSG seems like a logical fit given the club’s free-flowing attack and recent willingness to acquire massive talents, including Neymar and Kylian Mbappe, the Ligue 1 giants may not be able to financially support another big-time addition like Pogba.

UEFA’s Financial Fair Play laws have been tested by PSG, particularly during last summer’s transfer window when the club acquire both Neymar and Mbappe for over $400 million combined.

PSG is set to meet with UEFA on Friday though, which could give an indication one way or another as to how the front office can approach its spending habits in the months to come.

Could PSG, Manchester United solve each other’s problems?

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It’s late on a Wednesday night without the UEFA Champions League, so let’s dance on a theoretical floor, shall we?

One of the more widely-praised transfers of the year came when Manchester United and Arsenal decided to swap problematic players with Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Alexis Sanchez.

While neither has been perfect in their new homes, both have had starring performances and could (should?) fit in neatly come a full offseason worth of preparation.

More swaps like these should happen more often given the glut of managerial changes across major European leagues, with square pegs sometimes finding round holes when the boss arrives in town.

And have we got a sensational swap lined up for you. And no, it’s not Jose Mourinho for Unai Emery (though should it be? Nah, forget it).

If Paul Pogba is to leave Old Trafford this summer, there are scant few teams who could afford his transfer fee. Likewise, Paris Saint-Germain has Financial Fair Play all over its case and cannot simply make moves to better build its team for the Champions League by splashing cash all over the place.

PSG bought the two most expensive players of all-time last summer in Neymar ($281m) and Kylian Mbappe ($181m). The latter is going nowhere unless FIFA intervenes, 19 years old and becoming a more complete playmaker since heading to PSG from Monaco.

The former, well, that’s a bit trickier.

Neymar has been hurt, and while there’s no doubt his absence is the primary reason PSG was eliminated by Real Madrid, his time at the Parc Des Princes has hit more than a few speed bumps, with the Edinson Cavani PK drama and more.

So if Neymar is “worth” $281 million, could he head to United in exchange for a pair of Frenchmen in Pogba and Anthony Martial?

Areola

Alves — Silva– Marquinhos — Berchiche

Verratti — Rabiot

Pogba

Mbappe — Cavani — Martial

It’s imperfect given Alexis Sanchez’s preference to also play left wing, but going to a 4-3-3 like this for Jose Mourinho would allow a certain amount of freelancing for his trident.

De Gea

Valencia — Smalling — Bailly — Young/new LB

Matic — Herrera — McTominay

Sanchez — Lukaku — Neymar

Mixing in Marcus Rashford, Jesse Lingard and Juan Mata off the bench and for Cup games is not a bad luxury, plus we know United is going to splash a lot more cash to improve the center midfield and fullback depth.

There could also be a 3-4-3 of excellent repute here:

De Gea

Smalling — Jones — Bailly

Valencia — Herrera — Matic — Lingard

Alexis — Lukaku — Neymar

Mourinho praises Pogba’s “top, top performance” vs. Bournemouth

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While the headlines have been trumpeting Paul Pogba‘s summer departure from Manchester United, his manager is singing the praises of the Frenchman’s “top, top performance.”

[ MORE: JPW on Pogba-Mou fallout ]

“He can do it,” Mourinho finished, repeating. “He can do it.”

Mourinho labeled Pogba’s performance “Man of the Match” caliber, a week and a half after the big money midfielder was a star in United’s comeback win over Manchester City.

Cameras caught Pogba offering assistant coaches handshakes but not Mourinho after a late substitution, but there’s nothing amiss from the manager’s angle.

“Every player on the pitch was positive and put himself available for Saturday. I’m not very good on Man of the Match. I’m not a big fan of it, but Paul Pogba played very well. Against Man City he was phenomenal but today he was very, very good. A good choice.”

Mourinho continued to harp on what he wants from his players: straight-forward, responsible play.

“Everything was faster, it was simple,” he said. “The players were in the right positions and not trying one more flick, one more trick. Everything was good, I am happy.”

United faces Spurs on Saturday in the FA Cup semifinal. Will Pogba start?

Bournemouth 0-2 Man Utd: Red Devils tighten grip on 2nd

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  • United moves to 74 points
  • Smalling scores from Lingard
  • Pogba assists Lukaku
  • Bournemouth remains 11th

Chris Smalling and Romelu Lukaku scored as Manchester United rebounded from a weekend loss to top Bournemouth 2-0 at the Vitality Stadium on Wednesday.

United moves four points clear of Liverpool and six ahead of Spurs in the race for second, with all three teams having played 34 matches.

Bournemouth sits 11th with 38 points, three back of Newcastle which has played two fewer matches.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Bournemouth was busy in the first 10 minutes, capped by a Phil Jones intervention to thwart a burst by Callum Wilson, and Jordon Ibe’s shot going wide of goal.

United had a top chance through Rashford, who muscled the ball off Nathan Ake and had a rip diverted for a corner by Asmir Begovic.

The goal came moments later, with Smalling darting into the six to meet a feed from Jesse Lingard.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Luke Shaw dodged giving a way a penalty when he wrapped up Wilson on a 56th minute cross.

United made it 2-0 with a classy connection between Pogba and Lukaku, who finished with a deft chop over the sliding Begovic.

Paul Pogba situation nearing endgame

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Will Paul Pogba still be a Manchester United player when the summer transfer window shuts on August 9?

Right now it seems highly unlikely.

Pogba, 25, put in a poor display and was hauled off in United’s shock 1-0 loss at home against West Bromwich Albion on Sunday, just a week after he delivered a star performance to score twice in a stunning 3-2 comeback win at Manchester City.

Jose Mourinho doesn’t appear to have any time whatsoever for Pogba’s inconsistent form and the relationship between the duo is said to have broken down since the turn of the year, especially on the training ground, as the French international was left out of the team on multiple occasions and criticized publicly by Mourinho.

Recently we heard from Pep Guardiola that Man City had been offered the chance to buy Pogba in January and although that was surprising to hear, when you sit back and add up what is actually going on in this situation it starts to make sense.

It is, quite simply, Mourinho’s way or the highway. Always has been. Always will be.

Yet Pogba isn’t, how should we say, well, “one of the bottle” just like the self-proclaimed Special One. His own emoji, lively hair cuts and plenty of off-the-field appearances leave Pogba open for criticism and it appears that he is in full self-preservation mode at this point.

And here we are. At an impasse and the only way this will get resolved is if either Mourinho or Pogba move on.

Mourinho is going nowhere with a new contract signed in January to extend his stay at Old Trafford, while Pogba’s agent Mino Raiola is clearly testing the waters to see who will take Pogba this summer amid reports of Mourinho wanting a huge clear out. As our analysts said in the video above, it almost seems like Pogba is putting himself in the shop window by scoring goals (against Man City) and trying flicks and Hollywood passes whenever he can. That will not impress Mourinho. Not one bit.

With Anthony Martial and Luke Shaw also rumored to be joining Pogba on the way out, when it comes to all three of those players they are hugely talented but there are question marks about their mentality and consistency. That, in a nutshell, is why Mourinho wants them out.

He’d rather have a Nemanja Matic type over Paul Pogba. A Paulo Ferriera over a Luke Shaw. Jesse Lingard over Anthony Martial.

Mourinho has always valued reliability over razzmatazz and that is why Pogba doesn’t fit into his plans and why United’s club-record signing of $130 million less than two years ago will find himself leaving Old Trafford this summer.