Darren Bent said on talkSPORT (5:55pm, November 20, 2020) that there is a witch-hunt against Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba.
While the former Tottenham Hotspur and England striker, who now works as a pundit for talkSPORT, believes that Pogba has not been at his best at United, the Englishman thinks that the France international midfielder is unfairly criticised even when he has done nothing.
Bent said about Pogba: “We all know Paul Pogba is a top player, but unfortunately he has not shown it consistently enough at Manchester United, and that’s why a lot of people get on his back.
“But I do also think that there is a kind of witch-hunt against him. If anything goes wrong at Manchester United, even if he is not playing, he is sitting on the bench, and people are like, ‘You know what the problem is? Manchester United were terrible, but Paul Pogba is affecting the dressing room’.”
Too much criticism
Bent does have a point about Pogba getting too much and unfair criticism. Liverpool legend Graeme Souness has hit out at the former Juventus star on more than one occasion, while unfounded rumours of the 27-year-old being a bad influence in the United dressing room have been around for a while.
Not a single United player has had anything bad to say about Pogba, who plays with a smile on his face and appears to be a happy and jolly person on social media.
However, it is clear that Pogba needs to step up his game. During his spell at Juventus, the midfielder was one of the best players in the world and played an important role in France’s successful 2018 World Cup quest.
Pogba has simply failed to replicate those performances at Old Trafford, and although there were injury issues last season, when fully fit and available, he could not hit the dizzy heights at Juventus.
At the age of 27, Pogba should be hitting his prime and the best players at this age are winning Ballon d’Ors, not sitting out half a season for innocuous injuries and having their agents fight with their clubs.
According to WhoScored, the France international midfielder has made four starts and three substitute appearances in the Premier League and has provided two assists in three Champions League matches for United so far this season.
United are 14th in the Premier League table at the moment with 10 points from seven matches. To right the ship and get back in the Champions League places, they need Pogba to play a leading role for United in the coming weeks and months.