Tottenham Hotspur keeper Hugo Lloris believes Paul Pogba proved himself in the perfect way during France’s 1-0 win over Holland on Monday night.
The Frenchman has received a barrage of criticism for his performances since returning to Old Trafford for a world-record £89m fee over the summer.
However, his performance against Danny Blind’s side, in which he netted a decisive 30-yard thunder-strike, silenced his critics in emphatic fashion.
Speaking after the game, Lloris – who denied Memphis Depay in injury time with an excellent stop – was full of praise for his teammate.
“He’s a warrior in his mind,” Lloris told ESPN.
“That’s the most important thing. Of course he’s very talented but in football talent is not enough, and in his mind he’s very strong, and very ambitious, so he’s going to improve step by step and he will arrive at the level that he wants.
“Especially after his transfer record, there is a lot of expectation around him. But I think today he showed the perfect response. He helped the team to get the three points, he was decisive today and maybe he will give us confidence for the next few games.”
It was, without doubt, a performance that revealed why Jose Mourinho smashed the world transfer record in order to land Pogba’s signature. The Frenchman took to the pitch like a man possessed: every second ball was his; very attacking movement had him at the centre; anybody attempting to run in behind was effortlessly thwarted and forced to watch the Frenchman surge forward and spray inch perfect passes all over the pitch.
Even in the closing stages, with the home side frantically looking for an equaliser, Pogba ensured that France continued to grab Holland’s jugular, and nearly added a second with a header that went just wide.
Ahead of Manchester United’s crucial visit to Anfield next week, it was an ideal statement of intent.