Are you sure about that, Ole?
In all fairness, what else is United’s manager going to say? One of his star players said earlier this summer it is time for a new challenge and his agent, Mino Raiola, has spoken publicly about Pogba’s desire to leave the Red Devils with both Real Madrid and Juventus lurking.
Speaking ahead of United’s preseason friendly against Tottenham in Shanghai on Thursday, Solskjaer believes that only a small number of supporters are unhappy with Pogba.
“Our fans know what Paul has given the club and what he can give us,” Solskjaer said. “Obviously there’s some small minority. Paul has been absolutely top in the group, both me and the players will testify to that. He’s never for a second been a problem. We’re just grateful when he performs as well as he does.”
This seems a little naive from Solskjaer.
Pogba, 26, has enraged plenty of United’s fans not only for his words about wanting to leave over the past few months but with his attitude on several occasions over the past three seasons.
He became a scapegoat of the Jose Mourinho era at United and due to his then world-record transfer fee of $110 million in 2016 he has always been held to a higher standard. That is unfair, but Pogba’s inconsistency on the pitch feeds the notion that he is more focused about what is going on off the pitch and he’d rather be living in Madrid or Turin than Manchester.
Solskjaer is apparently happy with Pogba’s effort in training and matches in preseason and as Real Madrid struggle to move on Gareth Bale and Juve have spent big on Mathjis de Ligt, is it possible that Pogba will end up staying at United this season?
It now seems very likely that will happen and it will be intriguing to hear what kind of reception he receives from the home fans if he does play in the season opener against Chelsea at Old Trafford on Aug. 11 (Watch live, 11:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).
A mixture of boos and cheers is almost a certainty, if not slightly optimistic on Pogba’s part…