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2020-21 Performances


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6.0 Season Average Rating
Appearances
34
Goals
5
Assists
5
Yellow cards
8

Tallis

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This is not a reply to anyone in particular.

I somehow don’t think we can get the best out of him by playing him in 433 and having Bruno and him playing as 8s. There are various factors at play here - his fitness, our set-up, the premier league, our slow CB s and his style of football which is more “creative” but doesn’t necessarily provide “control”. I think the setup he would do very well in is one where the othe two MFs provide control, positional play, close down spaces and Pogba can do the risk taking. Doesn’t really work with Bruno
 

Mainoldo

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And some people need to learn how to read...
"I don't care who we are playing against, you need a top quality DM"

In Footballing terms DM means Defensive Midfielder, which is exactly what Casemeiro is and the position he played. Kroos is the DLP for them.

Now, if you really want to go into it, Bruno at 10 is getting 23 goals 14 assists.

Kroos and Modric combined in a 4-3-3 have 5 goals 16 assists.
Okay so do we want a medal for having the highest scoring midfielder in Europe or do we want balance. All them goals but if we went head to head they would beat us in a midfield battle.

We don’t need a top quality DM to beat 80 percent of the teams in this league. Yes we do need a top quality DM I agree but if we revert to 3 in midfield we have even options to make it work. McTominay; Fred; Bruno have enough legs to get us through picking either of Matic, VDB or Pogba. Further more if we keep the ball better we don’t have to chase as much in the middle. So keep your goals.. it literally means nothing because Bruno couldn’t break into that midfield 3.
 

Hammondo

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Okay so do we want a medal for having the highest scoring midfielder in Europe or do we want balance. All them goals but if we went head to head they would beat us in a midfield battle.

We don’t need a top quality DM to beat 80 percent of the teams in this league. Yes we do need a top quality DM I agree but if we revert to 3 in midfield we have even options to make it work. McTominay; Fred; Bruno have enough legs to get us through picking either of Matic, VDB or Pogba. Further more if we keep the ball better we don’t have to chase as much in the middle. So keep your goals.. it literally means nothing because Bruno couldn’t break into that midfield 3.
IMO one of our big problems is the type of midfielders we have. We either have midfielders who are fully focused on simply moving that ball forward or we have midfielders who are fully focused on defending.

From the Kroos thread these midfielders are mentioned

1. Gündogan
2. Kroos
3. Schweinsteiger
4. Kimmich
5. Ballack

We have no one like any of those aside from maybe Kimmich (who admittedly I have not seen a lot of).
 

Nou_Camp99

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5 goals and 3 assists in 31 games. Just the 1 goal last season wasn't it or was it two I forget?

Not going to lose a second sleep over losing Pogba. He's not fulfilled his undisputed huge talent. Not even close. Are we honestly saying that Donny or maybe another creative CM couldn't get those numbers Pogba has if they played as many minutes as Pogba has? I'd say it would very achievable.
 

MadDogg

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This is not a reply to anyone in particular.

I somehow don’t think we can get the best out of him by playing him in 433 and having Bruno and him playing as 8s. There are various factors at play here - his fitness, our set-up, the premier league, our slow CB s and his style of football which is more “creative” but doesn’t necessarily provide “control”. I think the setup he would do very well in is one where the othe two MFs provide control, positional play, close down spaces and Pogba can do the risk taking. Doesn’t really work with Bruno
Agreed. I'm a fan of his and think to some extent we wasted the first 3.5 seasons of his time here by not having the right midfielders to partner him, but longterm I don't really see it working with both him and Bruno. They both should be playing as the most free and attacking midfielder of the three. Playing them together will work at times but I don't think Pogba is consistent enough in that role to get the best out of either him or the team.
 

Mainoldo

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IMO one of our big problems is the type of midfielders we have. We either have midfielders who are fully focused on simply moving that ball forward or we have midfielders who are fully focused on defending.

From the Kroos thread these midfielders are mentioned

1. Gündogan
2. Kroos
3. Schweinsteiger
4. Kimmich
5. Ballack

We have no one like any of those aside from maybe Kimmich (who admittedly I have not seen a lot of).
Lets break it down though. If we categories our midfield. From those fully focused on defending we have:

Matic
Fred

Attacking wise we have Bruno, Pogba VDB and McTominay.

For the Toni Kroos example you are right we literally have McTominay :lol:. In reality if Pogba was to leave I’d be looking at replacing Pogba with an upgrade on McTominay. But like I said in a Declan Rice thread. McTominay is our Pogba replacement. We would just buy a DM.
 

Mainoldo

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5 goals and 3 assists in 31 games. Just the 1 goal last season wasn't it or was it two I forget?

Not going to lose a second sleep over losing Pogba. He's not fulfilled his undisputed huge talent. Not even close. Are we honestly saying that Donny or maybe another creative CM couldn't get those numbers Pogba has if they played as many minutes as Pogba has? I'd say it would very achievable.
When your arguement is based on stats you know you don’t have much of an opinion on football.:lol:
 

Hammondo

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Lets break it down though. If we categories our midfield. From those fully focused on defending we have:

Matic
Fred

Attacking wise we have Bruno, Pogba VDB and McTominay.

For the Toni Kroos example you are right we literally have McTominay :lol:. In reality if Pogba was to leave I’d be looking at replacing Pogba with an upgrade on McTominay. But like I said in a Declan Rice thread. McTominay is our Pogba replacement. We would just buy a DM.
Well what you wrote has nothing really to do with what I wrote. Yes Mctominay is Kroos like, but we do not have a Modric. There are not just defending and attacking midfielders.
 

Nou_Camp99

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When your arguement is based on stats you know you don’t have much of an opinion on football.:lol:
No my argument is based on the eye test too. Pogba has been a very mediocre signing given what he cost. When you can't even beat likes of DDG, Tony Valencia and Luke Shaw to club player of the year I think that speaks volumes about how he's not lived up to expectations. He's super talented but also frustrating.

Buy a proper top drawer DM and play Donny where Pogba has. Genuinely don't think you'd notice much difference. I don't get our fans thinking the world will end when he's not here. He's barely ripped up any trees for us anyway.
 

AgentSmith

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5 goals and 3 assists in 31 games. Just the 1 goal last season wasn't it or was it two I forget?

Not going to lose a second sleep over losing Pogba. He's not fulfilled his undisputed huge talent. Not even close. Are we honestly saying that Donny or maybe another creative CM couldn't get those numbers Pogba has if they played as many minutes as Pogba has? I'd say it would very achievable.
It’s a modest total but they’ve been absolutely vital contributions and they’ve come largely from a deeper midfield role. He's also been injured for a significant portion of the season so 5 goals and 4 assists is a reasonable return for a midfielder being used the way we do with Pogba.

Especially when you look at the actual consequences of some of those contributions:
  • Home to Brighton - Pogba’s assist helps us win the game
  • AC Milan away - Pogba’s goal and performance in the 2nd half won us the game
  • Fulham away - Pogba’s wonder goal won us the game
  • Burnley away - Pogba’s goal won us the game
  • Home to Villa - Pogba wins the penalty which wins us the game
  • West Ham away - Pogba’s fantastic goal put us level after being thoroughly outplayed in the 1st half and we went on to win the match 3-1
You take away any of those goals or assists and we’re potentially out of the Europa League and in a horrible dog fight for 4th spot. You include those contributions and we have an easy Europa League quarter-final match, with a great shot of winning the whole thing, while sitting comfortably in 2nd in the league. Using the perspective of quality, not quantity, is a better way to look at Pogba's impact this season.
 
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romufc

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Okay so do we want a medal for having the highest scoring midfielder in Europe or do we want balance. All them goals but if we went head to head they would beat us in a midfield battle.

We don’t need a top quality DM to beat 80 percent of the teams in this league. Yes we do need a top quality DM I agree but if we revert to 3 in midfield we have even options to make it work. McTominay; Fred; Bruno have enough legs to get us through picking either of Matic, VDB or Pogba. Further more if we keep the ball better we don’t have to chase as much in the middle. So keep your goals.. it literally means nothing because Bruno couldn’t break into that midfield 3.

Clearly, I am the one lacking football knowledge... Every manager / club that has been successful in the last decade has had a world class DM. They play in the games you say we do not need a DM.

Liverpool struggle against 80% of teams without Fabinho as DM
Pep bought Rodri for £60m because he knows the importance of a DM
Kimmich is first name on the team sheet.
Leicester, Chelsea, France all played Kante who is a DM
Real Madrid dominated with Casemeiro
Barca dominated with Busquets

They played all the games. Its called balance.... having a DM is not only for the bigger games but they allow other creative players to play and attack.

When the ball gets turned over, no matter who the opposition is, when you have a DM who can win it back and pass, it makes it easier to keep possession and mount attacks.

Keep my goals? so if Bruno isn't scoring, who is scoring from the 3 midfielders? Pogba? McTominay? Donny? Matic?
 

acnumber9

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5 goals and 3 assists in 31 games. Just the 1 goal last season wasn't it or was it two I forget?

Not going to lose a second sleep over losing Pogba. He's not fulfilled his undisputed huge talent. Not even close. Are we honestly saying that Donny or maybe another creative CM couldn't get those numbers Pogba has if they played as many minutes as Pogba has? I'd say it would very achievable.
Well he has a fifth of the goals and a quarter of the assists in half the time playing in easier games and in a more advanced position, so I’d say it’s debatable that he could.
 

United in sin

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5 goals and 3 assists in 31 games. Just the 1 goal last season wasn't it or was it two I forget?

Not going to lose a second sleep over losing Pogba. He's not fulfilled his undisputed huge talent. Not even close. Are we honestly saying that Donny or maybe another creative CM couldn't get those numbers Pogba has if they played as many minutes as Pogba has? I'd say it would very achievable.
His contributions have had more impact than any other central midfielder this season. In January for instance he helped us climb to the top of the table and as another poster already mentioned he's the sole reason we're still in the Europa league. You can't overlook that.
 

Nou_Camp99

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His contributions have had more impact than any other central midfielder this season. In January for instance he helped us climb to the top of the table and as another poster already mentioned he's the sole reason we're still in the Europa league. You can't overlook that.
Not disputing that. But we have to start being honest with ourselves. He's not been a success for us and he's not lived up to the billing. And most importantly if he was that good a club or two would have moved heaven and earth to get him and they simply haven't. He's still here despite apparently not wanting to be.

He's a good player and an incredible talent however he doesn't use that talent anywhere near enough. We have to stop pretending our world will fall in once he leaves. It won't. There loads of midfielders who could give us what he's given us. Maybe not too many as good on paper but football isn't played on paper. You can only judge Pogba on what he does on the pitch and he's been okay at best.
 

Hammondo

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His contributions have had more impact than any other central midfielder this season. In January for instance he helped us climb to the top of the table and as another poster already mentioned he's the sole reason we're still in the Europa league. You can't overlook that.
What competition has he had?
 

romufc

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Not disputing that. But we have to start being honest with ourselves. He's not been a success for us and he's not lived up to the billing. And most importantly if he was that good a club or two would have moved heaven and earth to get him and they simply haven't. He's still here despite apparently not wanting to be.

He's a good player and an incredible talent however he doesn't use that talent anywhere near enough. We have to stop pretending our world will fall in once he leaves. It won't. There loads of midfielders who could give us what he's given us. Maybe not too many as good on paper but football isn't played on paper. You can only judge Pogba on what he does on the pitch and he's been okay at best.

Exactly, when you pay what Pogba is paid in terms of transfer value and wages, you cannot be just okay. For a CM of his talent, he should be dominating football games, he has all the attributes for it.

It's a real shame he has not been able to fulfil his talent, there is always doubt over his role in the team, his productivity just isnt there on a consistent level.

People can create excuses for him such as not having players, manager etc.. around him but a world class player delivers no matter what is around them.

KDB was producing at Wolfsburg, Bruno at Sporting and United with similar teams. There have been too many excuses for Pogba in the past together with his constant media interviews for wanting to leave.
 

Ali Dia

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It’s a modest total but they’ve been absolutely vital contributions and they’ve come largely from a deeper midfield role. He's also been injured for a significant portion of the season so 5 goals and 4 assists is a reasonable return for a midfielder being used the way we do with Pogba.

Especially when you look at the actual consequences of some of those contributions:
  • Home to Brighton - Pogba’s assist helps us win the game
  • AC Milan away - Pogba’s goal and performance in the 2nd half won us the game
  • Fulham away - Pogba’s wonder goal won us the game
  • Burnley away - Pogba’s goal won us the game
  • Home to Villa - Pogba wins the penalty which wins us the game
  • West Ham away - Pogba’s fantastic goal put us level after being thoroughly outplayed in the 1st half and we went on to win the match 3-1
You take away any of those goals or assists and we’re potentially out of the Europa League and in a horrible dog fight for 4th spot. You include those contributions and we have an easy Europa League quarter-final match, with a great shot of winning the whole thing, while sitting comfortably in 2nd in the league. Using the perspective of quality, not quantity, is a better way to look at Pogba's impact this season.
It’s true. Hes not my favourite player but he’s definitely winning us games and he has a knack of popping up when Bruno isn’t able to. As I said in another thread. The likes of Pogba and Fred are doing well this season, they may not totally complement each other but we probably don’t even need a specialist dm for anyone outside of the top 6 and the big CL teams. It’s the attack that needs to snap out of their malaise. Keep Pogba. Get rid of Jesse and Matic for Rice and add an attacker and we will look a different team.
 

FerociousCorgis

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jesus do people not realize what our midfield will look like without pogba next year? If it was easy to sign a top quality midfielder pretty sure we wouldve done that by now to compliment pogba. If we sell pogba might as well just get ready for a season of games where we struggle to look competent and just hope for individual moments of magic. With covid economics as well not like anyone will knock our socks off with an offer for him. Keep pogba, add around him with a quality DM, and add one quality attacker and feel like we may actually be able to look like a competent team at some point next season.
 

roonster09

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It’s a modest total but they’ve been absolutely vital contributions and they’ve come largely from a deeper midfield role. He's also been injured for a significant portion of the season so 5 goals and 4 assists is a reasonable return for a midfielder being used the way we do with Pogba.

Especially when you look at the actual consequences of some of those contributions:
  • Home to Brighton - Pogba’s assist helps us win the game
  • AC Milan away - Pogba’s goal and performance in the 2nd half won us the game
  • Fulham away - Pogba’s wonder goal won us the game
  • Burnley away - Pogba’s goal won us the game
  • Home to Villa - Pogba wins the penalty which wins us the game
  • West Ham away - Pogba’s fantastic goal put us level after being thoroughly outplayed in the 1st half and we went on to win the match 3-1
You take away any of those goals or assists and we’re potentially out of the Europa League and in a horrible dog fight for 4th spot. You include those contributions and we have an easy Europa League quarter-final match, with a great shot of winning the whole thing, while sitting comfortably in 2nd in the league. Using the perspective of quality, not quantity, is a better way to look at Pogba's impact this season.
Good post.
 

Mainoldo

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Well what you wrote has nothing really to do with what I wrote. Yes Mctominay is Kroos like, but we do not have a Modric. There are not just defending and attacking midfielders.
Well we aren’t going to match every player are we. We have VDB and Pogba I think they are good enough to be comparable to Modric.
 

AgentSmith

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It’s true. Hes not my favourite player but he’s definitely winning us games and he has a knack of popping up when Bruno isn’t able to. As I said in another thread. The likes of Pogba and Fred are doing well this season, they may not totally complement each other but we probably don’t even need a specialist dm for anyone outside of the top 6 and the big CL teams. It’s the attack that needs to snap out of their malaise. Keep Pogba. Get rid of Jesse and Matic for Rice and add an attacker and we will look a different team.
I think that’s a good plan.

I’d just add the caveat that even with someone like Rice I don’t think we’ll be able to set up with Pogba as part of the double pivot in big games. For like 90% of the games next season I’d be happy with Rice and Pogba behind Bruno but against those teams who will look to dominate the ball I think we’ll still have to adapt the midfield.

If we are to persist with the 4-2-3-1 system, and we add someone like Rice and an attacker like Sancho, I’d like to see us switch between using Pogba as the LCM and the LAM depending on the opposition.

Against teams where we’ll look to dominate the ball:

Rice Pogba
Sancho Bruno Rashford
Greenwood​

Then against teams who will look to do the same to us:
Rice Fred
Sancho Bruno Pogba
Rashford
 

United in sin

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Not disputing that. But we have to start being honest with ourselves. He's not been a success for us and he's not lived up to the billing. And most importantly if he was that good a club or two would have moved heaven and earth to get him and they simply haven't. He's still here despite apparently not wanting to be.

He's a good player and an incredible talent however he doesn't use that talent anywhere near enough. We have to stop pretending our world will fall in once he leaves. It won't. There loads of midfielders who could give us what he's given us. Maybe not too many as good on paper but football isn't played on paper. You can only judge Pogba on what he does on the pitch and he's been okay at best.
Depends on what you define as success. How successful has united been overall in the post Fergie era and how pivotal was Pogba in the little success we've achieved since? Pogba and Ibrahimovich were vital for our Europa league and league cup titles under Mourinho, 2 of 3 pieces of 'major' silverware united have collected since 2013. Pogba has also been our best creative outlet from midfield by far since his signing, contributing more goals and assists than anyone else not playing in more advanced positions. He's been good in an overall poor united squad, in an overall very poor era in united's recent history.

What competition has he had?
Why is that worth a mention? Surely that's on the club, not Pogba
 

finneh

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It’s a modest total but they’ve been absolutely vital contributions and they’ve come largely from a deeper midfield role. He's also been injured for a significant portion of the season so 5 goals and 4 assists is a reasonable return for a midfielder being used the way we do with Pogba.

Especially when you look at the actual consequences of some of those contributions:
  • Home to Brighton - Pogba’s assist helps us win the game
  • AC Milan away - Pogba’s goal and performance in the 2nd half won us the game
  • Fulham away - Pogba’s wonder goal won us the game
  • Burnley away - Pogba’s goal won us the game
  • Home to Villa - Pogba wins the penalty which wins us the game
  • West Ham away - Pogba’s fantastic goal put us level after being thoroughly outplayed in the 1st half and we went on to win the match 3-1
You take away any of those goals or assists and we’re potentially out of the Europa League and in a horrible dog fight for 4th spot. You include those contributions and we have an easy Europa League quarter-final match, with a great shot of winning the whole thing, while sitting comfortably in 2nd in the league. Using the perspective of quality, not quantity, is a better way to look at Pogba's impact this season.
I don't think anyone is proposing playing with 10 men instead of Pogba. They're talking about putting someone in either with a greater offensive contribution and similar defensive contribution (e.g. Grealish); or someone with a similar offensive contribution and greater defensive contribution.

Looking at his contributions in both regards it shouldn't be difficult to replace either. I'd opt for the latter; especially as even McTominay isn't a million miles away in this regard.
 
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Hammondo

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Depends on what you define as success. How successful has united been overall in the post Fergie era and how pivotal was Pogba in the little success we've achieved since? Pogba and Ibrahimovich were vital for our Europa league and league cup titles under Mourinho, 2 of 3 pieces of 'major' silverware united have collected since 2013. Pogba has also been our best creative outlet from midfield by far since his signing, contributing more goals and assists than anyone else not playing in more advanced positions. He's been good in an overall poor united squad, in an overall very poor era in united's recent history.



Why is that worth a mention? Surely that's on the club, not Pogba
Thats true but you are claiming it like its an accomplishment.
 

Ali Dia

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I think that’s a good plan.

I’d just add the caveat that even with someone like Rice I don’t think we’ll be able to set up with Pogba as part of the double pivot in big games. For like 90% of the games next season I’d be happy with Rice and Pogba behind Bruno but against those teams who will look to dominate the ball I think we’ll still have to adapt the midfield.

If we are to persist with the 4-2-3-1 system, and we add someone like Rice and an attacker like Sancho, I’d like to see us switch between using Pogba as the LCM and the LAM depending on the opposition.

Against teams where we’ll look to dominate the ball:

Rice Pogba
Sancho Bruno Rashford
Greenwood​

Then against teams who will look to do the same to us:
Rice Fred
Sancho Bruno Pogba
Rashford
Good post.

Sancho and Rice are also very likely targets. It’s a big upgrade without ripping the team apart which is the way it should be when we are second. Few extra lads from the England camp who could really hit the ground running. Get a Pellistri level signing for an aggressive Bissouma type for DM/tackling box to box fred backup and variation. With Garner coming back we’d go from nothing to very well stocked for not a lot of cash (after we splurge on rice or whoever) I think we could also replace Pogba with Rice but it really should be Jesse and Matic going before him. He’s still an important player for us and he’s won us points on his own really. The thing is that the interplay between Pogba and Bruno leaves a lot to be desired and Pogbas new deal if he signs one is going to be massive. We all know it. I would hope if he signs that it’s in good faith and we can count on him to continue building around and to be a leader on the pitch for the younger lads.
 

Hammondo

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I think that’s a good plan.

I’d just add the caveat that even with someone like Rice I don’t think we’ll be able to set up with Pogba as part of the double pivot in big games. For like 90% of the games next season I’d be happy with Rice and Pogba behind Bruno but against those teams who will look to dominate the ball I think we’ll still have to adapt the midfield.

If we are to persist with the 4-2-3-1 system, and we add someone like Rice and an attacker like Sancho, I’d like to see us switch between using Pogba as the LCM and the LAM depending on the opposition.

Against teams where we’ll look to dominate the ball:

Rice Pogba
Sancho Bruno Rashford
Greenwood​

Then against teams who will look to do the same to us:
Rice Fred
Sancho Bruno Pogba
Rashford
I do not think rice is good enough. Yes better than we currently have but if we wanna compete at the top hes simply not good enough.
 

AgentSmith

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I do not think rice is good enough. Yes better than we currently have but if we wanna compete at the top hes simply not good enough.
I can certainly see people’s arguments against Rice. Who would you prefer for that CDM slot?
 

Nou_Camp99

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Exactly, when you pay what Pogba is paid in terms of transfer value and wages, you cannot be just okay. For a CM of his talent, he should be dominating football games, he has all the attributes for it.

It's a real shame he has not been able to fulfil his talent, there is always doubt over his role in the team, his productivity just isnt there on a consistent level.

People can create excuses for him such as not having players, manager etc.. around him but a world class player delivers no matter what is around them.

KDB was producing at Wolfsburg, Bruno at Sporting and United with similar teams. There have been too many excuses for Pogba in the past together with his constant media interviews for wanting to leave.
This is the issue with some of our fanbase. There's nothing wrong with admitting that Pogba has been a huge disappointment despite his natural ability. He has been.

There's no more excuses that can possibly be made for him. He's got it in him to be right up there with KDB but he's not done it.
 

Ali Dia

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This is the issue with some of our fanbase. There's nothing wrong with admitting that Pogba has been a huge disappointment despite his natural ability. He has been.

There's no more excuses that can possibly be made for him. He's got it in him to be right up there with KDB but he's not done it.
When we could have signed KDB for 30% less and no Mino then it’s not been a great deal but he was majorly important in the EL winning season and he was a huge plus for Oles initial run. He’s won us points this season and our title push died when he got injured. Everyone keeps saying how great he is behind the scenes but I don’t even think the club has made him an offer yet which is very strange if we want him to stay. We are a strange club when it comes to this stuff though. I think if his contract isn’t too wild it would still be smarter to sign him up than sell for cheap or let leave on a free. We could hopefully sell again for a better price in a year or two if things don’t work out. He has a gun to our heads here this summer, again! :lol:
 
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Nou_Camp99

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Depends on what you define as success. How successful has united been overall in the post Fergie era and how pivotal was Pogba in the little success we've achieved since? Pogba and Ibrahimovich were vital for our Europa league and league cup titles under Mourinho, 2 of 3 pieces of 'major' silverware united have collected since 2013. Pogba has also been our best creative outlet from midfield by far since his signing, contributing more goals and assists than anyone else not playing in more advanced positions. He's been good in an overall poor united squad, in an overall very poor era in united's recent history.
Zlatan was 34 and came on a free. His contribution to us that season was huge no doubt. Pogba came with huge hype and expectations for a world record fee or close to and he's not had the same impact as even Bruno has had. Nowhere near in fact.

And I genuinely believe that Pogba has more natural ability than Bruno so then you have to ask serious questions about his desire, attitude and application. He's the best 'great on paper' player in the history of the world though.
 

AgentSmith

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I don't think anyone is proposing playing with 10 men instead of Pogba. They're talking about putting someone in either with a greater offensive contribution and similar defensive contribution (e.g. Grealish); or someone with a similar offensive contribution and greater defensive contribution.

Looking at his contributions in both regards it shouldn't be difficult to replace either. I'd opt for the latter; especially as even McTominay isn't a million miles away in this regard.
I also don’t think anyone’s even implied that as a joke :lol:

The strongest argument I’ve found against Pogba is that he doesn’t really fit a 4-2-3-1 system and so even if we were to sign a replacement that was less talented the fact that they would fit the system more would produce a better overall effect for the team.

Replacing him with Grealish would definitely be a good move but would also require a rejig of the team and wouldn’t necessarily solve our issue with a lack of quality from deep. Grealish is so good though that I wouldn’t necessarily mind that.

I also completely disagree with the idea that McTominay could match his contributions. McTominay’s been able to add a goal scoring element to his general play this season which is great to see but it still hasn’t produced anywhere near as important a collection of goals as Pogba’s against Fulham, Burnley, and AC Milan. Then in terms of general playmaking ability they don’t operate in the same universe.
 

finneh

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I also don’t think anyone’s even implied that as a joke :lol:

The strongest argument I’ve found against Pogba is that he doesn’t really fit a 4-2-3-1 system and so even if we were to sign a replacement that was less talented the fact that they would fit the system more would produce a better overall effect for the team.

Replacing him with Grealish would definitely be a good move but would also require a rejig of the team and wouldn’t necessarily solve our issue with a lack of quality from deep. Grealish is so good though that I wouldn’t necessarily mind that.

I also completely disagree with the idea that McTominay could match his contributions. McTominay’s been able to add a goal scoring element to his general play this season which is great to see but it still hasn’t produced anywhere near as important a collection of goals as Pogba’s against Fulham, Burnley, and AC Milan. Then in terms of general play making ability they don’t operate in the same universe.
"You take away any of those goals or assists and we’re potentially out of the Europa League and in a horrible dog fight for 4th spot."

Taking away his contribution is assuming that his contribution and more wouldn't come from whoever replaced him. Obviously anyone would only want to replace him with someone with a greater overall contribution (offensive + defensive).

Grealish was an example of someone who can do everything Pogba does and more both defensively and offensively. McTominay was an example of someone with less offensive contributions, but more defensive. The latter was not used as someone who could match Pogba's offensive contributions, but someone who if he continues to develop his game in both elements could provide a better balance to the squad.

Overall my view is that with our current squad a midfield of Pogba-Fernandes doesn't work in the same way Grealish-Fernandes wouldn't (which I'm assuming you agree with).

Overall the opportunity cost of keeping Pogba massively outweighs replacing him in my view. That doesn't even mean replacing him like for like: the upside of a decent new CB, DM, RW or ST would far outweigh the loss (even assuming we'll target two of those anyway, a third would be more beneficial).
 

Shimo

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Top of the league at the start of the year to at best 11 points behind City. Anyone passing the eye test of games after Pogba was injured could easily see that when Bruno was the only creator and if it wasn't happening for him, then we struggled heavily as a team. It was easier for teams to focus on Bruno. When you put Pogba on the field, deeper, you are going to get a player that can create, dribble and take focus to allow space for others.

VDB as much quality he has is a player that is not a deep lying midfielder with the qualities of Pogba brings. At least nothing so far has shown that with us or at Ajax. He is a player that needs to play higher up the field. Pogba doesn't stay and we stick with current approach, it means a midfield of McFred which is quite lacking in terms of creating.
 

FerociousCorgis

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Top of the league at the start of the year to at best 11 points behind City. Anyone passing the eye test of games after Pogba was injured could easily see that when Bruno was the only creator and if it wasn't happening for him, then we struggled heavily as a team. It was easier for teams to focus on Bruno. When you put Pogba on the field, deeper, you are going to get a player that can create, dribble and take focus to allow space for others.

VDB as much quality he has is a player that is not a deep lying midfielder with the qualities of Pogba brings. At least nothing so far has shown that with us or at Ajax. He is a player that needs to play higher up the field. Pogba doesn't stay and we stick with current approach, it means a midfield of McFred which is quite lacking in terms of creating.
Exactly. We should be adding to his quality and not removing it and expecting things to be fine. Not sure why people have faith in us on finding a creative midfielder to replace him so easily.
 

reddev3

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It’s a modest total but they’ve been absolutely vital contributions and they’ve come largely from a deeper midfield role. He's also been injured for a significant portion of the season so 5 goals and 4 assists is a reasonable return for a midfielder being used the way we do with Pogba.

Especially when you look at the actual consequences of some of those contributions:
  • Home to Brighton - Pogba’s assist helps us win the game
  • AC Milan away - Pogba’s goal and performance in the 2nd half won us the game
  • Fulham away - Pogba’s wonder goal won us the game
  • Burnley away - Pogba’s goal won us the game
  • Home to Villa - Pogba wins the penalty which wins us the game
  • West Ham away - Pogba’s fantastic goal put us level after being thoroughly outplayed in the 1st half and we went on to win the match 3-1
You take away any of those goals or assists and we’re potentially out of the Europa League and in a horrible dog fight for 4th spot. You include those contributions and we have an easy Europa League quarter-final match, with a great shot of winning the whole thing, while sitting comfortably in 2nd in the league. Using the perspective of quality, not quantity, is a better way to look at Pogba's impact this season.
He would also score/assist a lot more if he was allowed a bit more freedom, all his contributions are critical because 90% of the time Ole only pushes him forward or goes really attacking when we need a goal otherwise he's content with him sitting deep and not doing much.

When ever we are drawing or winning he plays him like how Pep use to play Gundagon, basically just sitting deep in a two man mid keeping things ticking over and when we need a goal he plays him like how Pep has played Gundogan the past 6 months which is more box to box constantly making runs up to and into the box until the final whistle.
 

Borys

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Takes him a while to get going after injury. Slow is the best I can label him after this performance. Difficult tight game in midfield and he doesn't like it that way.
 

#07

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I don't think that was Paul's best game but, to be fair to him, he's only just started playing again after months out. I doubt flying out to Western Asia during the international break has helped his form. I'm sure he'll improve with more minutes.
 

Mainoldo

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Doesnt have legs to play as a lone 6 anymore.
He does if we keep the ball and has a Fred or Bruno along side him. But in this type of football he doesn’t no.

Toni Kroos doesn’t move an inch and is fine every week. Put Toni Kroos in this team we’ll say his legs are gone.