It doesn't seem to stack up very well with the figures that I've come across, nor with my own subjective impression when watching games. Which makes this kind of attitude kind of puzzling to me... At best, what many people are saying is to let him play like Zidane or Yaya Toure, not to have Messi-like* freedom in midfield. Toure would be in many people's lists for one of the best midfielders in PL history, at his peak. As far as I can see the conversation people are having about Pogba now is almost exactly the same as the one about Toure a few years ago, other than the fact Pogba's about 5 years younger and has immaturity added on top. Thankfully he also has more talent, and hopefully he's more receptive to coaching. The below article is a really good summary on some of the facts about Toure's running - it paints a much more nuanced picture of the story than many of us really consider. Some of the figures are surprising, some illuminating, and ultimately what it shows is there are pros and cons to the approach and it depends on the manager to decide how to weigh the up. The similarities to Pogba are very apparent. http://www.skysports.com/football/n...s-and-the-truth-behind-his-man-city-work-rate Spoiler: "Yaya Toure’s sprint stats and the truth behind his Man City work rate" I don't know where you can find distance covered stats for the whole season, but here's his distance covered stats in the UCL. It works out at about 10.7km per 90 mins, which is more than Toure in 15/16 (10.4km) and in between the likes of Fernandinho (10.9km) and Casemiro (10.5km) this season. I think that seems like a fair reflection of their average distance covered in all games, rather than that sample. It'd be interesting to see the sprint figures to add more nuance to the story in the way it did for Toure in the above. I think Pogba's probably not doing so bad on that front either. If you look here, de Bruyne is covering about 12km per 90 mins, so there's no question that attacking players can contribute more as individuals (which based on the above statistics, has always been one of de Bruyne's strengths) and systems and managers can get that bit more out of players (which is evidently one of Guardiola's strengths). I think it's reasonable to expect Pogba and Mourinho to improve on the latter. The way we're currently set up simply doesn't demand players to cover the kind of ground Guardiola teams do. I don't think it's reasonable to expect Pogba to improve on the former. Some players just aren't built that way. The idea that Pogba is the only player that has ever been afforded the luxury of running less than their midfield partners is absolutely ludicrous. *For the record, Messi runs about 8km per game these days. The intensity of their running is very different, but it's worth establishing just how wide that range of distance covered is. 8km for Messi, 12km for de Bruyne - I'd imagine they're at the upper and lower limits. Pogba is much closer to the upper limit. Thoughts?