Tuesday 16 July 2019

'When you are happy you are free' - Paul Pogba opens up on his revival under Old Gunnar Solskjaer

Manchester United’s Paul Pogba has urged the side to carry on their winning run (John Walton/PA)
Manchester United’s Paul Pogba has urged the side to carry on their winning run (John Walton/PA)
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Paul Pogba has suggested that Manchester United's players are relishing the opportunity to express themselves under interim boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, in comments that may be viewed as a snipe in the direction of departed manager Jose Mourinho.

Pogba's fractious relationship with Mourinho was a major talking point throughout 2018, with the French World Cup winner stripped of the club's vice captaincy and then dropped from the team entirely before the Portuguese tactician was sacked last month.

Now Pogba has told Sky Sports that he is enjoying his football once again under Solskjaer, as he hinted the new management team have brought direction to a team that has lost its way.

"The way we are playing we have more possession of the ball," said Pogba. "We know more where to attack and where to go. We have more of a pattern of play and more of a structure.

"That makes it easier for everyone. So I would not say it is only myself. Yes, I have scored a few goals and had a few assists but it is all the team are enjoying it.

"I am at the biggest club in England for sure and we have top players. They help me, they are helping me a lot. A player cannot do everything himself. You need players around you.

"For sure, when you are happy you are free in your mind. You do things without thinking. I work hard in training, I enjoy playing with them and, for sure, I will give my best."

Meanwhile, in an interview with beIN Sports, Mourinho gave a glimpse of his own frustrations in his final months at United, as he claimed managers now need strong support of club owners if they want to win a battle of player with high profile players.

"Everything good I did with players is not news anymore," stated Mourinho. "News is when you have problems. In modern football there is a problem between the coach and the player.

"We are not in a time anymore where the coach, by himself, is powerful enough to cope and to have a relationship of education and sometimes confrontation with players who are not the best professionals.

"The club must have an owner, a chief executive, a sports director and then a manager. This is a structure that can cope with all the problems that modernity is bringing to all of us.

"A club must be very well organised to cope with all of these kind of situations where the manager is only the manager and is not trying to keep the discipline or trying to educate the players."

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