Manchester United: Rangnick delivers positive Pogba update

19 January 2022 02:27:18 GMTPlus10
Paul Pogba is closing on a return

Manchester United boss Ralf Rangnick has confirmed midfielder Paul Pogba could make his long-awaited return from a thigh injury early next month.

Pogba has not featured for United since the 2-2 Champions League draw with Atalanta on the 2nd November, as he was suspended for the subsequent Premier League clash with Manchester City, before sustaining his injury while away on international duty with France.

A lot has happened at Old Trafford during the intervening period, with the sacking of former boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and the appointment of Rangnick as the Norwegian's successor on an interim basis until the summer.

It has certainly not been smooth sailing for Rangnick since his arrival, but the imminent return of Pogba could provide the club with a timely boost as they look to get their Premier League top-four aspirations back on track.

Boro cup clash pencilled in as return date

In total, Pogba has missed United's last 10 Premier League matches, during which time they have registered four wins, three draws and three defeats.

That underwhelming record has left the Red Devils seventh in the standings, five points off the Champions League positions and priced at 1001.00 to go on and secure a top-four finish.

A lack of creativity in midfield has been one of the criticisms labelled at United and the return of Pogba should certainly add an extra spark, with the 28-year-old having chalked up seven assists from his nine league appearances to date this term.

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However, United fans will have to wait a little longer for the return of Pogba, as Rangnick has confirmed the number six has only just resumed first-team training and will not be considered for Wednesday's trip to Brentford - a match the Red Devils can be backed at 1.75 to win.

Saturday's home clash with West Ham United will also come too soon for Pogba, but Rangnick has revealed he expects the midfielder to be available for the FA Cup fourth-round tie with Middlesbrough on the 4th February.

Rangnick spells out Pogba plan

"Paul Pogba had his first day of training with the whole group yesterday and, in the first training session, he showed what kind of extraordinary player he could be," Rangnick told reporters.

"He will not be available for the two games this week but hopefully after the international break, when we have the Cup game against Middlesbrough and the away game at Burnley, I think he could be an option."

Will this be Pogba's swansong?

Pogba's future at United feels like it has been the subject of debate ever since he returned to the club from Juventus in 2016, with every transfer window seeing new speculation emerge.

The mercurial midfielder has been consistently linked with a return to Juve over the years, as well as moves to the likes of Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain, but it feels there could now be a lot more to the ongoing speculation, given his contract is set to expire this summer.

United are unlikely to want to lose a player of Pogba's quality, especially on a free transfer, but time is running out if they are to tie him down to a new deal, while the uncertainty regarding who the next permanent manager will be at Old Trafford cannot be helping the situation.

That means United supporters may only have a few months left to enjoy watching the sometimes divisive midfielder in action for the club, but if this does prove to be his final season, will he be going out on a high?

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