Danny Murphy has told Ole Gunnar Solskjaer of the tough balancing act he faces in playing both Bruno Fernandes and Paul Pogba in the same Manchester United midfield.
The Red Devils will get the resumption of their Premier League season underway with a tough trip to Tottenham on Friday June 19.
United were arguably the form club in the top flight prior to football’s hiatus, going unbeaten in their last 11 matches across all competitions.
That run of form propelled them up to fifth place, just three points behind Frank Lampard’s youthful Chelsea side.
The January addition of Portuguese playmaker Bruno Fernandes breathed new life into the club’s attacking play, and many fans are hopeful of a mouthwatering partnership with Paul Pogba materialising in the middle of the park.
The World Cup winner last appeared in a United shirt on Boxing Day, but after overcoming an injury-riddled period, is expected to play a huge part in the conclusion to the season.
However, Murphy reckons playing the pair together won’t always be possible – and fears that axis could get badly overrun by the Premier League’s top sides.
“I don’t think against lesser opposition having both of them in there,” Murphy told talkSPORT.
“The problem you’ve got, when you’ve got two attack-minded players who both want to go forward and don’t really want to go back that way, in the big games against Liverpool, against Barca in the Champions League, whatever it may be, they’re going to get found out defensively. So it’s a delicate balance.
“I think it would be exciting to see if it did work and to give it a chance.
“My gut feeling is that Pogba will go, yeah, my gut feeling is he’ll go.
“It’s going to be very difficult to keep him happy if he’s not going to play every single game and the fans have already turned I think.”
“I think he expects to play, he’s a World Cup-winner, he’s got all the talent in the world, I know that’s not enough but I’m not sure he will want to fight his way back in. He’ll expect to play.
“The one thing that’s sure with United, after what I’ve seen of Fernandes, he’s going to play, he is going to start.”
Murphy expects Pogba sale
Pogba has been linked with moves to Real Madrid and former club Juventus and Murphy says it wouldn’t be a shock were he to leave.
“He needs to be in a team where he’s winning every game and has got a lot of players around him who are prepared to do the work for him, because he doesn’t want to defend generally,” Murphy added.
“He might go back to Juve, maybe a PSG or Madrid-type.
“He’s always going to have admirers because he’s got such talent, he can open you up from anywhere.
“His passing’s phenomenal, very athletic, technically gifted, scores goals with both feet.”