Paul Merson tells Man United to back Jose Mourinho ahead of 25-year-old

The Arsenal legend tells the Manchester United board to back Paul Pogba

Man United midfielder Paul Pogba Photo: The Sport Review

Paul Merson has urged the Manchester United hierarchy to get behind their manager Jose Mourinho rather than Paul Pogba.

The France international moved to Manchester United in a club record £89m deal from Serie A giants Juventus in the 2016 summer transfer window.

Pogba won the Europa League and the League Cup in their first season back at Old Trafford but the versatile midfielder has struggled to replicate his Juventus form.

The 25-year-old was criticised for his inconsistent performances in the 2017-18 campaign to fuel talk of a fallout with Portuguese head coach Jose Mourinho.

The World Cup winner has been linked with a potential move to FC Barcelona and Real Madrid in the summer transfer window following his World Cup triumph.

However, former Arsenal star Merson has urged the Manchester United board to support Mourinho ahead of Pogba.

“I’d rather Jose be happy than Pogba. But as we saw last season, Pogba didn’t pull up too many trees. He had a great World Cup, don’t get me wrong,” Merson told Sky Sports.

“But it’s always the same with players. Real Madrid and Barcelona come in for you and it turns people’s heads. Everyone wants to play for those two teams, that’s the way it is around the world. We see it with [Philippe] Coutinho and other players.

“It’s turned his head and you’re going to have the agent [Mino Raiola] joining in with his little quotes to the newspapers, things like that. He’s a World Cup winner now.”

Manchester United were 2-1 winners against 2016 champions Leicester City in their opening Premier League fixture at Old Trafford last weekend.

The Red Devils broke the deadlock thanks to stand-in captain Pogba after the France star netted the opener from the penalty spot.

Manchester United finished in second place in the Premier League table last term after the Red Devils finished 19 points adrift of Manchester City.

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