Man Utd legend Sir Alex Ferguson labelled Paul Pogba a “dreamer” who will “never make it” if he did not have the right guidance, according to Pascal Olmeta.
Ferguson was still United’s manager when Pogba made his debut for the club during the 2011/12 season.
The midfielder played seven times for them that term before he joined Juventus.
After four years in Italy, Man Utd paid a then world-record fee of around £89m to re-sign Pogba. The 28-year-old has been consistently criticised for his performances since his return to the club.
The midfielder’s contract is set to expire next year and he has been linked with a move to Real Madrid.
Olmeta – who had spells at Marseille and Lyon – has told RMC Sport (as cited by Sport Witness) that Ferguson predicted that Pogba would struggle if no one “showed him the way”:
“I was invited to Manchester United training by Sir Alex Ferguson. I went there with two children from my charity and I had lunch with him and he told me about Paul Pogba, who was 17.
“He told me: ‘You see this player, he will be extraordinary, full of talent. He will be at the top, but he is a dreamer, and if no one is there to show him the way, he will never make it’. It was a few years ago, and today, we are in this debate.”
Elsewhere, Rio Ferdinand has criticised Pogba for taking “liberties” against Atalanta on Tuesday:
Ferdinand said: “I thought he took liberties a few times, he was a bit sloppy. Sometimes you just need to be told ‘sharpen up, play one or two touch’.
“He needs to be telling himself and he didn’t do well enough. There are not those [critical] conversations going on in our changing room.
“There’s not a player in the world that starts every game perfectly.”
Paul Scholes added that Pogba is sometimes “away with the fairies”:
“He needs somebody talking to him all the time, someone there who he totally respects and is experienced,” Scholes said.
“He is a really experienced player but he will get to 35 and will be doing the same stupid stuff – stud-rolling the ball and people know it.
“The biggest thing with the player is his concentration – he goes away with the fairies sometimes.
“At Juventus he was excellent and that’s why we signed him but you look at [players around him] – [Andrea] Pirlo, [Giorgio] Chiellini, [Gianluigi] Buffon, an aggressive manager, telling him all the time and he will need that kind of treatment until he is 35.”
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