Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho last night challenged reporters at his pre-Swansea City press conference to question Paul Pogba, rather than him, on the midfielder’s struggles on the pitch over the last couple of months.
Not seeing eye to eye
Stories have been rife in the English media over recent weeks that Red Devils’ star man Pogba’s dip in form and subsequent dropping from Manchester United’s starting XI was due to a fallout between he and manager Jose Mourinho, stemming from a heated touchline argument during the club’s 2-0 loss to Tottenham at the end of January.
Pogba was left out of Mourinho’s starting lineup for consecutive clashes with Huddersfield and Sevilla on the 17th and 21st of February, though his absence for the former was attributed to illness by United.
However, eyebrows were once again raised regarding the Frenchman’s state of mind at Old Trafford when it was revealed that Pogba had returned to training with the rest of the Red Devils squad the morning following his side’s victory over Huddersfield, leading many outlets to question the legitimacy of his ‘illness’.
All in all, Pogba has managed starts in just 3 of United’s fixtures since late January, with the 25-year-old’s showings when he has been called upon having fallen some way short of expectations.
Speaking in a press conference ahead of his side’s Premier League clash with Swansea City today, Jose Mourinho was questioned once again on the recent struggles of his side’s midfield dynamo, with the Portuguese tactician revealing:
‘I think he is very fine after the injury. It was a difficult injury, it was an injury that other players, other clubs, other medical assessments, they end in surgery.’
‘His option with the medical opinions was not to go to the surgery table and his recovery was really really good. I think he is more than fine in relation to his recovery from the injury, which is an area sometimes where you have a recurrence. In his case, not at all.’
‘It’s nothing to do with his injury. His recovery was good.’
However, when pressed further for an explanation, Mourinho urged those in attendance to ask Pogba, rather than him, about his dip in form:
‘Ask him. Ask him when you get a chance when he thinks about it.’