Man Utd set Paul Pogba contract deadline as worrying double transfer claim emerges

Manchester United's Paul Pogba during the UEFA Champions League, Group F match against Villarreal at Old Trafford

Manchester United are reported to have told Paul Pogba and his agent they want a decision made on his future before Christmas.

The 28-year-old midfielder has enjoyed arguably his best spell at Old Trafford since the start of last season. Not only have his performances proved consistent, but he has added goal contributions to his work.

In fact, Pogba notched seven assists in his first four Premier League games this term. No player in the competition’s history had previously reached that tally in so quickly and it serves to underline the player’s true talent.

But despite Ole Gunnar Solskjaer seemingly showing his ability to nurture the best from the midfielder, a dark shadow lurks over his future. Indeed, with now less than nine months left on his contract, the player can leave for free next summer.

More alarmingly for United, he can also open talks with reported suitors from January 1.

As such, United bosses are now reported by The Sun to have told Pogba they want a decision made on his future by Christmas.

They have been in regular discussions with his agent Mino Raiola in an effort to strike a deal. And they have reportedly told Raiola that Pogba will be offered a £400,000 a week deal to commit.

That would elevate Pogba to the status of the club’s best-paid player ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo and David de Gea.

However, Raiola has other plans and a report on Saturday claims talks with Real Madrid are also ongoing.

Furthermore, the report in The Sun claims PSG are also ready to top United’s offer. Indeed, the Ligue 1 giants are reportedly readying a package worth £510,000 a week to move to France.

Well aware of the interest, the report claims United bosses have set a deadline by Christmas for Pogba to make his choice. They do not want the ‘circus’ of his contract saga stretching out any further.

New Pogba contract would be statement of intent

Man United would do well to get Pogba's contract renewed.

And the failure to commit by that deadline will see United make the decision for him and announce his exit.

Reports have previously indicated that Pogba looks ready to commit to his future to Old Trafford.

A bright start to the season – coupled with their signing of Ronaldo and Raphael Varane – had seemingly convinced him to stay.

However, he’s yet to strike an agreement. And there have been signs in recent weeks that United’s bright start to the season is fizzling out.

Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Everton followed a 0-1 home defeat to Aston Villa. And while a midweek Champions League win lifted spirits, their performances of late have disappointed.

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Ashley Young wants United to sign Verratti

Former United star Ashley Young, meanwhile, claims the club should focus on signing Marco Verratti to boost their midfield.

The 28-year-old Italian was superb in the engine room as PSG sunk Man City 2-0 on Tuesday night. In Young’s opinion, Verratti would be an “unbelievable” signing for the Red Devils.

“The Michael Carrick type has been missing for years. They haven’t gone out and replaced Michael Carrick.

“Don’t get me wrong – Fred and McTominay are good players but I don’t think there’s a Michael Carrick around.

“I was watching the PSG v City game yesterday and I think Marco Verratti is the closest one and nobody’s gone out to test the water to try to sign him. I think he would be an unbelievable signing for Manchester United.”

Young then turned his attention to Paul Pogba. The Frenchman has been deployed mainly on the left flank lately, something Young believes Solskjaer is “missing a trick” with.

“I think (United) are missing a trick in the centre of midfield. I think Paul needs to play there,” Young added. “At the weekend he was playing out towards the left, I don’t think that’s Paul’s best position.

“I think he wants to control play and he wants to dictate. He’s a player who can find passes, the way Carrick used to do.”

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