Soccer

Mauricio Pochettino backed to make simple change to get best out of Man Utd ace Paul Pogba

Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba may benefit the most if Mauricio Pochettino replaced Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, according to Liverpool legend Steve Nicol. United have reportedly contacted Pochettino this week with regards to potentially appointing him as their next manager. The Red Devils have had a disappointing start to the season domestically and suffered a shock 2-1 Champions League defeat at Istanbul Basaksehir on Wednesday.

Pressure is growing on Solskjaer ahead of Saturday’s lunchtime clash against Everton at Goodison Park.

Nicol says the Norwegian is to blame for playing some players out of position.

And he thinks Pogba is the obvious example of that and claims Pochettino would make a simple change by playing him in his correct position if he became the club’s next manager.

Nicol told ESPN FC: “By the time you get to play for Manchester United, people like Pogba and [Bruno] Fernandes and now [Marcus] Rashford and the goalkeeper [David] De Gea and [Harry] Maguire and all these guys, it’s not about the coach improving them as players, it’s about putting them in positions where they’ll succeed.

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“Do you think Pochettino coming in is going to make Paul Pogba a better player?

“No, what Pochettino will do is he will put him in a spot where he can succeed and where he can be at his best.

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“He’s a great example Pogba, because right now anytime he steps on the field, Ole puts him on a spot where he can’t succeed.

“Every time he plays him he’s asking him to defend and he can’t defend.

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“Guess what happens, he gives penalties away, doesn’t track back, then everybody gets on his back instead of the Pogba we know at his best, driving forward and getting in towards the opposition’s penalty box.

“So the coach has got to put players in a position where they can succeed and Pogba’s the best example of putting a player in the wrong place.”

Pochettino has been out of work since being sacked by Tottenham a year ago this month.

But he insists he is now ready to return to management.

Pochettino said on Sky Sports: “I always feel ready to be in the game. I love football. It’s not a stress. It’s not a stress to go to the training ground.

“I am looking forward to being involved in the game again. I love the game. In these times it is difficult. We are inside, we are working, doing things.

“But it’s not the same as being involved every single day, sharing with your players, the staff, with the club.

“You miss that. That’s the reality.”

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