Manchester United a have huge decision to make on whether to axe Jose Mourinho or Paul Pogba… one has to go

Choose to get rid of Jose Mourinho and they are telling every future incumbent, in what is becoming an increasingly uncomfortable hot seat, that player power wins the day at Old Trafford.

Add to the fact that Mourinho’s track record is simply too good for United to give up on him now and start all over again…again.

United need to cut their losses, or rather get their money back, on World Cup winner Paul Pogba because it is simply not happening with this key figure in the camp.

The relationship with the manager has hit rock bottom and is at the core of much that is going wrong at United right now.

If Mourinho told Pogba after the lamentable 2-2 draw with Southampton, in front of the rest of the squad, that he is a virus affecting the other players around him.


Pogba is a popular figure in the dressing room at United.

Good friends in particular with players like Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford he seems to have a sense of fun that the others like.


MOURINH-OH DEAR Man United’s makeshift defence for Arsenal includes a midfielder and three stars who’ve barely played


So the problem is when he is at odds with the manager everyone else feels it too.

Unfortunately that connection Pogba has with teammates off the pitch has never transferred itself onto it.

When, if ever, has a United fan left a game extolling to virtues of Pogba’s performance?

Name a game when you would have given him anything over three out of five?

The argument from the pro-Pogba camp no doubt is that a different manager might get more out of him.

As revealed in SunSport today he also believes the manager is making him the scapegoat at told him so on Saturday.

But that does not excuse the simple things he does wrong, like losing possession of the ball, constantly.

Get £89 million for him from Barcelona or his old club Juventus in January and Mourinho will have the cash to get two other players in.

Hungry players who want to make a name for themselves rather than one who has already done that before he has arrived.

It looked on Saturday afternoon at Saint Mary’s that Pogba had simply given up playing for the manager. He was not the only one.

Mourinho refused to speak about Pogba specifically yesterday.

He did, however, refute the suggestion that a professional footballer would stop trying just because he did not like his boss.

Mourinho said: “If you think a player only plays when, in your words, he is behind the manager, what I have to call these players or, in this case, what you are calling them, is dishonest.

“A football player is paid – and very well paid – to be a football professional.

“What is that? It is to train every day to his limits, to play every game to his limits, is to behave socially according to the nature of his job, is to respect the millions of fans around the world and to respect the club.

“One thing is to perform well and not so well, another thing is to be a football professional.


“If you say that a player plays well or bad because of how good a manager is, you are calling the player dishonest.

“When pundits, who were professional players, say that this player is not playing for the manager, did they do that when they were players? Were they dishonest players?

“If they were they shouldn’t be in front of a camera speaking to millions of people. I disagree totally with that question. You have to analyse a player by ‘is he performing, yes or no?’. You shouldn’t go in that direction because you are calling the players dishonest.

“You believe a player scores in his own goal and then runs and celebrates ‘I scored in my own goal because I don’t like the manager’? Do you believe in that? I don’t believe in that.”

The United players have not quite done that yet, but they have certainly been gifting opponents points.

Another two dropped on Saturday and now an inform Arsenal, fresh from their North London derby win at the weekend, are the visitors to Old Trafford tonight.

Mourinho would love to axe half his team but a raft of injuries means he simply can’t.

Nemanja Matic for example will have to play at centre-back again.

Asked if he had the resources to drop his underpeforming stars he said: “One thing is to have the resources, another thing is to have the desire and forget the resources. That is a different thing.”

In other words he wants to do it but can’t.

So Pogba will play again.

But the Old Trafford crowd have long since given up hope that he will make a difference. A difference to a situation that simply has to change soon.

IN THE POGHOUSE

PAUL POGBA wants Jose Mourinho to stop blaming him  for Manchester United’s problems.

The pair had a frank dressing-room exchange after Saturday’s 2-2 draw at Southampton.

United boss Mourinho said Pogba was like a virus who was infecting players around him.

Pogba laughed off the attack saying he should not be the scapegoat for United’s failings.

Mourinho also told the whole squad that they need to think of their team-mates.

And that if they are not giving 100 per cent then they need to drop out of the team.

Read more about the latest episode in boss Mourinho’s difficult relationship with £89million club-record signing Pogba by clicking here.

 

 

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