Mourinho and Pogba
Paul Pogba launched a blistering critique of Manchester United’s defensive-minded tactics in Saturday’s draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers, which is likely to infuriate manager Jose Mourinho.
The 25-year-old French World Cup winning midfielder said there were no excuses for not attacking in home games.
The draw — played out in front of legendary former manager Alex Ferguson who made his first appearance at a match since undergoing emergency brain surgery in May — left United in seventh, eight points behind leaders Liverpool.
“We are at home and we should play much better against Wolves. We are here to attack,” Pogba told the media after the match.
“When we play like (that) it’s easier for us.”
Asked what is stopping United attacking more, Pogba said: “I can’t tell you because I’m a player. It’s not me.”
Pogba’s criticism comes shortly after it appeared that he and Mourinho were mending their rift, with the Portuguese manager saying on Friday that success at the World Cup had sparked Pogba into performing well.
Pogba, who hasn’t lived up to expectations since his then world record £89 million ($116 million) move from Juventus in 2016, had been angered by Mourinho’s remarks in July that he had played much better at the World Cup because he was not surrounded by his entourage.
“I think teams are scared when they see Manchester United attacking and attacking. That was our mistake,” said Pogba.
“Maybe the attitude should be better and we should play better because, again, we are at Old Trafford and we should just attack and press like we did against Tottenham, Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal last season.”
Pogba laughed when it was put to him were United lacking pace and mobility.
“I’m not the manager, I cannot say that,” he said.
“Obviously we should show more options but I cannot say that because I’m a player.
“That’s my way of thinking — we should move better, yeah.”