Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has this afternoon revealed that Paul Pogba could yet be named as the club’s captain for the 2019/20 campaign, despite the midfielder’s revelation that he hopes to secure a move away from Old Trafford this summer.
Pogba’s exit links
The speculation surrounding the future of Pogba has been one of the talking points of the summer transfer window so far.
Despite enjoying the finest season of his career to date statistic-wise in 2018/19, Pogba was routinely heavily-criticised by fans and pundits alike throughout the campaign.
The 26-year-old’s lethargic nature has seen large sections of the Red Devils’ fanbase become increasingly fed up with their star midfielder, with most now in agreement that, due to his inability (or refusal) to step up and carry a team when he is needed most, Pogba is simply not the player to lead Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s attempted revolution at Old Trafford.
Pogba vs a Man Utd fan. Wow. pic.twitter.com/PqKhBoGwBo
— Feroze Ali (@feroze17) May 12, 2019
As such, the mounting tension between Pogba and the United faithful has since resulted in inevitable speculation that the former Juventus man could be on the move this summer.
‘A new challenge’
Pogba himself, meanwhile, did little to downplay such rumours last month, when the World Cup winner admitted that the time may have come for him to depart Manchester.
Speaking during a promotional visit to Japan, he explained:
‘There is a lot of thinking [going on]. I have been three years in Manchester and have been doing great – some good moments and some bad moments, like everybody, like everywhere else.’
‘After this season and everything that happened this season, with my season being my best season, as well . . . I think for me it could be a good time to have a new challenge somewhere else. I am thinking of this: to have a new challenge somewhere else.’
🗣 – “I think for me it could be a good time to have a new challenge somewhere else.”
Paul Pogba has admitted he is thinking of leaving Manchester United for a new challenge this summer, with Juventus and Real Madrid interested in the midfielder: https://t.co/V3E3rnYFQT pic.twitter.com/kI9fgDLz7z
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) June 16, 2019
Pogba to captain United?
Despite Pogba’s clear indication that he would rather be elsewhere, though, the explosive midfielder could yet lead United into the 2019/20 campaign.
Speaking in a press conference this afternoon, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer admitted that Pogba is one of a number of players under consideration to be named the Red Devils’ next captain.
When questioned directly on whether the Frenchman is viewed as a potential candidate, the United boss simply responded with ‘yes’.
Solskjaer also confirmed that Ashley Young will continue as his side’s skipper for the rest of pre-season:
‘We’ve got quite a few possibilities there and when the season starts we’ll announce it. Of course we’ll have a good assessment, see how pre-season goes. But, as you saw, Ashley will wear it when he’s playing until we decide on someone.’
Finally, Solskjaer provided a brief update on Romelu Lukaku’s future, amid the mounting links between the Belgian and Serie A giants Inter Milan:
‘Let’s see when the season starts. We’ve not had any bids we’re considering.’
Solskjaer says Paul Pogba will be under consideration for the captaincy next season. Asked about Lukaku’s future and whether he expects him to be a #MUFC player at the start of the season, he said: “We’ll see.” Said it was “private” when asked if he’d told Lukaku he wants to stay
— James Ducker (@TelegraphDucker) July 13, 2019