Pogba’s done and the football is nearly here. Keep those Mails coming to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We doubted that they could get him. We were wrong. Fair f**ks.
Can I be the first to say how much I’m looking forward to Mediawatch’s sly sideways look at the sarcastic it’ll never happen what are they smoking coverage of the Pogba transfer saga over on Football 365.
Puncture their pomposity lads!
Manchester United are back
Paul Pogba will ply his trade at Old Trafford again this season. As a United fan I am more excited about this season than any since Sir Alex retired and a lot of it has to do with Pogba. We finally have the box to box, tackling, yet creative scoring midfield man we’ve lacked for years. More than any other signing made in recent seasons , it’s this Paul Pogba deal that finally signals that United are ready to mix it in the transfer market with the big boys (and beat them) in Spain.
However, I have to say that I’m rather disappointed in the general reaction to his move from the media and indeed Man United fans themselves. Everyone’s baulked at his price tag and questioned whether he’s worth it. It’s almost as if we’re not getting a world class player who’s not in goal. It’s obvious that the price tag is robust but as the entire world knows, so are the bank balances of Premier League clubs now. That English clubs pay a premium for players should no longer be a surprise.
For some perspective, let’s look at the last player who went for a world record fee. Gareth Bale had a brilliant individual season with 21 goals and 4 assists in the Premier League and led Tottenham to a 5th place. Pogba got 8 goals and 12 assists this past season and has won the Scudetto for the past four years. Considering Pogba is a midfielder and offers significantly more defensively, it’s only natural that the price be inflated ( by 3m btw, Juve only get 89m pounds) in the three years since Bale broke the record to seal his move to the Bernabeu.
Manchester United also know that Pogba is one of the most marketable athletes in the world. With Rooney’s career on the wane (hehe) they needed a new poster boy for the future and Pogba fits the bill as a 23 year old world class player. Yes he’s cost a lot of money but both Wayne Rooney and Juan Sebastion Veron cost more in terms of percentage of revenue. With United’s commercial power, they can sign a Pogba every summer if they wanted to so why not sign one now that obviously fills a position of big need? And so what if it’s the world record fee?
Divyank, Los Angeles
Kudos to Woody
So Pogba is back, or as the kids would say #Pogback. No doubt there will be naysayers and doom-mongers, especially supporters of other teams, but I for one am bloody excited to see what he can do in a United shirt. All those saying he cost too much would be the same ones laughing at us had it fallen through; they would also take him in their team in a heartbeat.
It looks like he cost roughly £89m (€105m) based on recent exchange rates, which would have been £74m pre-Brexit. Thanks a bunch Borris. It’s important to note that Ronaldo cost £80m in 2009 and Bale cost £85m in 2013 – both around £87m after accounting for inflation. I don’t remember as many people lighting candles for football’s “soul” when these deals went through. No, if I remember correctly, Levy was hailed a genius and there was a consensus that United got screwed over as could have got more out of Madrid. But now United are buying a player for a huge amount of money it’s the end of days.
Pogba is what we have been missing for years. Someone in the engine room who can drive us forward, he can link play, score every type of goal and can put in a tackle. He’s a proper box-to-box midfielder like Roy Keane but actually better on the ball (sorry Roy, but you’re better in other areas). Having watched him play for the youth team and thinking that our midfield would be sorted for years to come with him and Morrison, to watching both leave for effectively nothing, I am delighted that the club have brought him back.
With so many great managers this will be the toughest and most competitive Premier League ever, but with our new manager and the four players we brought in I am confident we can compete. And kudos to Ed Woodward for doing great business and getting it done early.
Welcome back Paul – now let’s get our trophy back.
Garey Vance, MUFC
… The only thing that could have made that Stormzy Pogba video more swag would’ve been seeing Ed Woodward dab his way across the back of the screen!
Anon (down with the kidz)
Brad Smith, presumably not a Manchester United fan
I have simply never wanted a sporting entity to fail as much as I want Mourinho and co to this season. Everything that is bloated and obscene about football can be found in many corners at Old Trafford. Ego, arrogance, overpaid primadonnas, self-importance. It’s all there.
Daniel Storey saying “there is something wonderfully familiar” about United winning or losing the title in their final third is just about the worst sentence I have ever read on this site. Absolute garbage. There is nothing wonderful about the eye gouging Portuguese strutting about with his band of egotistical mercenaries.
I for one hope they fail spectacularly.
A defence of Southampton
Just like to point out from your article on Southampton that both Mane and Van Dijk were brought on the transfer deadline day, meaning in previous seasons things weren’t looking so rosy at this point either.
Despite the loss of key players and an underwhelming replacement for Mane (Redmond is good but Mane was class), the board should and do have the full backing of the Southampton fan base and I can’t wait to to see how Puel crafts this team!
Crowds don’t realise how important they are
It’s interesting how rare it is for a club and its fans to have unity. It seems to be the big gaping hole between success and failure. There are very few examples in recent times of clubs totally at one with their fan base.
As a Liverpool fan this was never more evident than Rafa’s season with Torres and Gerrard. I always still think that if the crowd were together like in 13/14 then just maybe they might have got over the line. All my friends are Utd fans and this is where this gets interesting ; after Pogba, the crowd is divided, surely one would think, because of their brilliant signings everyone would be delighted. But they’re not! That’s a fact!
Some are lost in the fallacy that they used to believe in youth, some are tied to the dream that City bought the league and not them.
Arsenal are a whole Jeremy Kyle episode by themselves and Liverpool fans are tearing each other apart because one set don’t understand the ethos of the manager they’ve appointed.
All in all, I’ve seen the power at first hand when everyone believes, I’ve witnessed the unthinkable happen. It’s a merger between the team and the crowd, and when that occurs nobody is left dissatisfied.
The separation is modern football is all too obvious but the fact that the crowd don’t realise they can snatch it back towards them is even more insane.
Dotz (Used to be Belfast, now Glasgow) Might go and see the Brodge
Idrissa Gueye love
One of the most interesting signings of the summer is Idrissa Gueye (usually known as Idrissa Gana) for Everton. Last season with Villa, Gana was erratic: at times an effective shield for the back four, at times bypassed too easily. But the stats suggest some potential: he was second in the league behind N’Golo Kanté in both interceptions and tackles.
In part this was because Villa were constantly on the defense, but it shows that he frequently got the job done under difficult circumstances. So his difficulties may have been due to a lack of quality around him. He could easily step up at a stronger side, and Koeman is an excellent defensive coach. According to reports, he impressed in his first preseason outing. With Gareth Barry getting older every day, Muhammad Besic injured, and James McCarthy having lost his edge, Gana might very well be an influential player for Everton this year.
Peter G, Pennsylvania, USA
More important notes on netting
A wonderful note from Stu “inside of the net would make more sense” London.
We can all agree about the side netting – it’s on the side. We agree that there is netting at the rear of the goal – it’s at the back of the goal. But the front of the net is missing, so there’s no way a ball can hit the “back of the net” because there’s no front. It’s an existentialist problem. If there is no front, how can there be a back? “The rear netting” makes sense. But ..
The agricultural “back of the onion bag” is close to the truth, except it should really be the bottom of the onion bag, being as onion bags are usually held vertically, not horizontally, but at least they are designed with an opening.
Which brings me to the horrible “if he/she wasn’t offside, that would have been a goal”. Except, it wouldn’t have been. Your man/woman, instead of enjoying two yards of splendid isolation at the top of the 6-yard box you would have been minced between the two nasty-bastard central defenders whose job it is to stop you doing what you thought you just did.
And – we’ve had this before – but the “woodwork did not deny (team) or (player)”. The goal is the area under the bar, and between the posts. That’s the target. The “woodwork” is not there to “deny” a goal, more to graphically point out that you missed the target.
Rant over. You may resume your daily lives.
Steve () Los Angeles
Someone got it!
Can I just say Daniel Storey’s nod to Cities by Talking Heads in this mornings top 10 reasons to excited brightened up my morning.
Luke U MCFC