Arsenal legend Robert Pires has advised Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba to stop speaking to the press and focus on his on-the-pitch performances instead.
Pogba has been embroiled in controversy all throughout this season for a number of seemingly inflammatory comments.
The French midfielder insisted that Man United should “attack, attack, attack” at home after the club’s 1-1 draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers, a quote which was taken as a subtle criticism of manager Jose Mourinho. Soon after, he was stripped of the vice-captaincy.
Pogba has also been the subject of a number of reports, almost certainly leaked by his agent Mino Raiola, which have claimed he’s ready to leave the club to join FC Barcelona and wants to do so as soon as possible.
Pires has pleaded with the 25-year-old to let his talent on the pitch do the talking.
“For Paul Pogba, the best is to say nothing,” Pires said at a La Liga event in India.
“He’s a great player. If Man United paid a lot of money for him, it’s because he’s a good player.
“His relation with the manager may not be so good but he’s a professional. It’s very important for him to be focussed on Man United, on the pitch.
“Now say nothing, play football and walk out — that’s my advice for Paul Pogba.”
Pogba put in a stellar second half performance for United in a dramatic 3-2 fightback win against Newcastle United at the weekend. Playing in a deeper role, Pogba dictated the game and did the simple things perfectly. Yet he also surged forwards at times, most notably for Anthony Martial’s 76th-minute equaliser, where Pogba played a deft backhell flick to set up his compatriot. He was also heavily involved in United’s winner that came through Alexis Sanchez in the last minute.
If he can continue to have performances like that where the simple things are perfect and he doesn’t try to over-complicate his game, he’ll start to be considered in the debate on “who is the best Premier League player”.