Manchester United interim manager Ralf Rangnick seemed to suggest that Paul Pogba’s second stint at Old Trafford was effectively over with the Frenchman set to miss the rest of the season
Paul Pogba has hinted that he in fact may not have played his final game in a Manchester United shirt.
The Frenchman is out of contract at the end of the season and looks destined to depart Old Trafford after an unsuccessful six-year stint back at the club. Signed for £89million in 2016, the World Cup winner has failed to hit the heights at club level and looks set to leave on a free in a matter of weeks.
And it was suggested that his nine-minute cameo at the start of the thrashing by Liverpool would be his final action for the Red Devils, having picked up a calf injury moments into the game at Anfield. Rangnick was highly critical of the 29-year-old and seemed to suggest that he would be out for the remainder of the campaign and therefore likely to not make another appearance for United.
“He’s injured, he’s a player who won the World Cup with France, he’s such a good player that he was a regular starter for a team like France,” Rangnick said before the defeat at Arsenal. “We all know what kind of potential he has and what kind of good player he can be.
“He was quite like a few other players struggling to get his best performance sustainably on the pitch for a team like Man United. This has not only been the case this season or in the last couple of weeks. As far as I remember it was also the case in earlier years.
“It’s difficult to say [why]. If myself or other coaches knew it would be easier to change that but I don’t know. Right now it doesn’t make sense to think about that because he won’t be available for tomorrow and most likely not for the upcoming games.
“As it seems right now he will not renew his contract and I don’t know, maybe the club or Erik [ten Hag] will not want to renew his contract, I don’t know. It’s most likely he won’t be here anymore next season.”
Rangnick added that what could be Pogba’s final act as a United player was to gift Liverpool the opening goal, after failing to tell the referee he was struggling with an injury: “It was never part of the game plan to stand at the halfway line, even more so since Pogba was already hobbling across the pitch.
“He should have lain down or sat down, but he was trying to hobble behind the referee and tell him he’s injured. We were effectively one player down and still attacking high up.”
Paul Pogba has said he hopes to return before the end of the season ( Image: SkySports)
Pogba’s absence from the United midfield was clear to see at the Emirates as they fell to yet another Premier League defeat, losing 3-1 to the Gunners to all-but end their hopes of a top-four finish. And with the scores at 2-1 at the half-time break, Pogba took to social media to claim there was still a chance he would play again this season, declaring “it’s not over”.
“Absolutely gutted to not be able to help the team in today’s game,” Pogba wrote on social media. “I will work even harder to come back stronger and hopefully before the end of the season. It’s not over. Thank you all for your support, United we stand!”