(AP)- Paul Pogba is reportedly “ready to quit” Manchester United if Jose Mourinho remains manager, and agent Mino Raiola is said to be in talks with Real Madrid regarding a future move for the Frenchman.
Mike McGrath reported for The Sun that the relationship between Pogba and Mourinho has “reached breaking point,” and a source close to United was quoted: “Things are at an all-time low between them. Paul has made it clear he doesn’t want to be there if Mourinho is.”.
There’s further speculation regarding a potential summer exit, too, news that should affect betting tips as Raiola is said to already be in negotiations with Real, who were one of the clubs linked with Pogba in 2016 when he left Juventus to rejoin the Red Devils.
Gossip regarding a rift between player and manager intensified after Pogba was recently dropped for fixtures against Sevilla and Huddersfield Town, but former United defender Gary Neville told Goal the onus is on him to resurrect his form:
Pogba moved back to Old Trafford a little more than 18 months ago for what was then a world-record sum of £89 million, but few would say the midfielder has justified his price tag since then.
That being said, there is cause to argue Pogba’s shortcomings have come due to the fact he’s rarely played in his preferred role under Mourinho, and former Red Owen Hargreaves told BBC 5 live Sport the former Juve star needs more aid:
It seems unlikely the club will cut ties with Mourinho anytime soon considering he signed a contract extension to 2020 in January.
United are currently third in the Premier League and in the midst of a UEFA Champions League round-of-16 clash against Sevilla.
The Sunday Times’ Paul Hirst reported United have grown tired of Raiola’s “meddling” in Pogba’s affairs, although ESPN’s Alex Shaw has lumped blame squarely at the feet of Mourinho:
Even if a suitor did have the funds necessary to recruit a player of Pogba’s quality, United are in no desperate need to sell considering he has more than three years left to run on his contract.
There is the notion that a player switching leagues will naturally need some time to adapt, although Italian football writer Adam Digby highlighted these inconsistencies are not new to his time in the Premier League:
Resolving any bad blood between Mourinho and Pogba would be a wise priority for the club should rumours of a divide prove to be true, with Real unlikely to pass up the chance to sign such a player if he becomes available