Paul Pogba spoke effusively of his connection with Romelu Lukaku on the pitch following Manchester United’s 3-0 win over Stoke City.
He continued to chip away at the visitors with Lukaku after half time and the striker crowned a superb performance with his 17th goal of the season with 72 minutes gone.
Speaking after the game, Pogba was quick to note how Lukaku’s presence allows him to inflict further damage.
When we talk about the ‘connection’ between Pogba and Lukaku, we do not just mean the number of times they pass to each other – although that over-the-top ball is always available with the Belgian in the side.
More notable, however, is the effect they have on opponents when occupying a similar vicinity of the pitch, with one skipping past players at will and the other forcing defenders back – a match threaded together by Juan Mata and responsible for causing chaos in the minds of Stoke defenders.
There is not much connection when Pogba is in his own half and Lukaku listlessly sitting on the last man, and Mourinho has engineered a way for the two to play closer together in recent weeks to devastating effect.