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Sunday 13 October 2019

Pogba’s agent Raiola questions judgement of Scholes

Raiola leaps to defence of his client after Scholes questioned his leadership following Manchester United’s loss at Brighton.

Paul Pogba’s performance at Brighton was scrutinised by former Manchester United midfielder Paul Scholes (Gareth Fuller/PA)
Paul Pogba’s performance at Brighton was scrutinised by former Manchester United midfielder Paul Scholes (Gareth Fuller/PA)

By Press Association Sport staff

Paul Pogba’s Manchester United future remains in doubt after agent Mino Raiola responded to criticism of the midfielder by hitting out at former Old Trafford favourite Paul Scholes.

Speaking after United’s loss at Brighton on Sunday, Scholes had some damning words for the club’s record signing.

Pogba captained the Red Devils as they went down 3-2 on the south coast, with Scholes questioning the World Cup winner’s leadership capabilities following an average performance.

Paul Scholes

“There’s a lack of leaders in the team, that’s why we thought Paul Pogba might be the ideal candidate to be that leader but he wasn’t there tonight. He had another really poor game. He’s so inconsistent,” Scholes told Optus Sport.

“Pogba was playing the ball out of play, overhitting passes and getting caught in possession.”

It has not been a good start to the new season for United, this defeat coming on the back of a transfer window where manager Jose Mourinho was unable to sign any of the defensive targets he was keen to land, with vice-chairman Ed Woodward receiving plenty of criticism from supporters for not getting a deal over the line late in the window.

Executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward has been criticised for United’s lack of transfer activity (Martin Rickett/PA)

United have also found themselves in the media spotlight regarding Pogba, with the 25-year-old’s on-field performances, relationship with Mourinho and long-term future at Old Trafford coming under scrutiny.

Pogba, who scored an injury-time penalty to reduce the arrears against Brighton, admitted himself that his approach had not been right against the Seagulls.

“The attitude we had was not like we wanted to beat them, they had more hunger than us,” he said.

“I put myself first, my attitude wasn’t right enough.”

Scholes and Pogba (right) spent a short time as team-mates at Old Trafford (Dave Thompson/PA)

But Raiola defended his client, sending two barbed tweets on Tuesday morning which called Scholes’ judgement into question.

“Some people need to talk for fear of being forgotten. Paul Scholes wouldn’t recognize a leader if he was in front of Sir Winston Churchill. @paulpogba,” he wrote.

“Paul Scholes should become sports director and advise Woodward to sell Pogba. Would be sleepless nights to find Pogba a new club..@paulpogba.”

Pogba’s performances for United over the last 18 months have been heavily scrutinised, especially following a superb World Cup campaign playing for his country.

Mourinho insisted ahead of the trip to Brighton that there is no issue between himself and the player, but question marks remain over Pogba’s long-term future at the club he rejoined from Juventus in 2016.

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