Ten Hag’s role in Man Utd getting rid of Pogba explained

Erik ten Hag reviews Man Utd's win v West Ham

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Paul Pogba is currently in the spotlight after it emerged the Juventus star will miss the World Cup in Qatar through injury. So, with that being the case, it’s time to wind the clock back a few months. Erik ten Hag, it was claimed in the summer, advised Manchester United against renewing the midfielder’s contract – with Frenkie de Jong in his thinking.

Pogba has been ruled out of the World Cup with a knee injury, having failed to make a single competitive appearance for Juventus since his Hollywood homecoming back in the summer.

And ex-Old Lady chief Luigi Maifredi has claimed United may have been aware of the midfielder’s problems, which is why they didn’t stand in his way of a departure.

He told TMW: “Behind the failure of the Juventus team there is also the poor performance of the transfer campaign.

“Then let’s face it, if Manchester gives away Pogba so easily, they must have [known] something. There are consequences for Juventus.”

It was reported back in the summer that United, when planning for the summer, asked Ten Hag what to do about the France international.

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Though he often struggled for consistency during his time in England, some members of the club’s hierarchy actually wanted the midfielder to stay put.

Yet Ten Hag advised United not to enter talks with Pogba over a new deal, with the Dutchman prioritising a deal for Frenkie de Jong at the time.

Now, with Pogba crocked, it appears the Red Devils made the right call.

It’s unfortunate for the midfielder, who is one of the best players in the world when fully fit and firing.

Pogba had expected his life to improve for the better when he returned to Juventus, having previously quit the Serie A giants for United back in 2016.

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But fans will have to be patient as he attempts to return to action and the World Cup in Qatar, it seems, will be missing one of its biggest attractions.

United have bolstered their midfield in the short time since Pogba’s departure, with Ten Hag securing two key signings when the transfer window was open.

Christian Eriksen arrived on a free from Brentford and has made an instant impact at the club, providing the assist for Marcus Rashford’s winner against West Ham on Sunday.

And Casemiro is going from strength to strength following his blockbuster move from Real Madrid.


Though United missed out on De Jong back in the summer, Ten Hag is still hopeful of reuniting with his former Ajax midfielder in future transfer windows.

For now, however, it seems the 25-year-old is happy to be at the Nou Camp having started their last five matches across all competitions.

Meanwhile, regarding Pogba, old foe Graeme Souness couldn’t resist a dig at the Juventus star when talking about the club’s recruitment.

“I think Manchester United are a fantastic football club, they really are, one of if not the biggest in the world, glamorous and most successful,” he said.

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“Can I just call this out, who was the first person to call out Pogba as a pudding? I rest my case.”

He added: “I can remember the first time I saw him, it was the semi-final of the Champions League, Juve vs Real Madrid.

“I was with Jamie Redknapp and Thierry [Henry], Jamie was raving about this young midfielder, wait till you see him.

“And I came away from the game thinking ‘he’s not for me’. Never has been and I think I’ve been proved right and his time at Manchester United is a mitigated failure.”

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