Zlatan Ibrahimovic speaks out about his friendship with Paul Pogba

by Leo Nieboer


Zlatan Ibrahimovic has spoken out about his relationship with Paul Pogba, insisting the Frenchman will continue to improve at Manchester United.

Both Ibrahimovic and Pogba arrived at Old Trafford over the summer, with the former signing on a free and the latter signing for a world-record £89m.

The pair, despite netting 12 goals between them this season, have received criticism for failing to produce powerful performances on a constant basis under Jose Mourinho.

Ibrahimovic, speaking ahead of Man United’s Europa League game with Feyenoord on Thursday night, claimed the 23-year-old’s “time will come” at Old Trafford.

“Paul is working hard,” he said. “He has a big pressure on him and people expect him to do magic in a short new time.

“We have four new players, a new coach, he had been doing great things in Italy but we know he is a good player and he will bring it out for Manchester United.

“If the team is fantastic it will make it easier for the individual. His time will come.”

The main issue with Pogba’s time at United so far has been less about the Frenchman himself, but rather the scrutinising magnifying glass of the football world in general.

This is the problem with world record transfers: we see the astronomical figure and expect Pogba to single handedly bulldoze anything that happens to get in his way. And yet, this wasn’t what Mourinho expected when the Frenchman arrived at Old Trafford.

After all, it is often forgotten that Pogba is just 23. He was not drafted in for two years of unprecedented magic; he was drafted in as a long-term investment. The £89m is not supposed to be justified over the course of just one season, but rather over the course of five – perhaps even ten – years.

This is not a Robin van Persie-esque signing; this is an investment for a long period of constantly powerful, precise performances at the heart of midfield. And it has to be said that, so far, the Frenchman hasn’t disappointed in the context of his actual function in this United side.

You may also like