Saturday 1 October 2016

Who will wear number 6? Man United release new squad numbers as Pogba saga goes on

Tom Rooney

Published 21/07/2016 | 17:45

Jose Mourinho of Manchester United in action during a first team training session at Aon Training Complex on July 13, 2016 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Matthew Peters/Man Utd via Getty Images)
Jose Mourinho of Manchester United in action during a first team training session at Aon Training Complex on July 13, 2016 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Matthew Peters/Man Utd via Getty Images)

In the era of squad numbers, little of a player’s relevance or position can be gleaned from the digit on his back, yet certain jerseys still evoke a cherished historical significance.

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With the arrivals of Zlatan Ibrahimović, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Eric Bailly at Old Trafford this summer, many of the United faithful have been curious as to what squad numbers the trio will be granted.

Of course, as the Paul Pogba transfer saga continues, there are those that will wonder if any jersey will remain vacant in anticipation of his arrival. Indeed, with United in China for a brief pre-season tour, Ed Woodward is said to be in Turin brokering what is likely to be a world record deal in prising Pogba from Juventus.

Well the wait is over, as the club released their provisional squad numbers for the 2016-17 campaign.

Ibrahimović will don the number nine, previously worn by Anthony Martial, who has been handed the 11 jersey.

Recently granted to the consistently inconsistent Adnan Januzaj, the shirt made famous by George Best and Ryan Giggs, now belongs to the Frenchman.

Bailly will wear the hitherto vacant number three, with Mkhitaryan given the decidedly forgettable 22.

Memphis Depay retains the number seven deemed too much of a burden by Antonio Valencia, and worn with great distinction by Eric Cantona, David Beckham and, to a lesser degree, Michael Owen.

Last season’s breakout stars Marcus Rashford and Jesse Lingard will sport numbers 19 and 14 respectively, having had 35 and 39.

The six jersey is yet to be handed out, which funnily enough, is the same number Pogba has occupied at Juventus for the last two campaigns.


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