Paul Pogba is hoping Adnan Januzaj can still carve out a career for himself at Manchester United, according to the Belgian winger.
Januzaj – on a season-long loan with Sunderland – has reportedly been put up for sale by Manchester United with the club ready to accept a bid of just £8.5m for a player, who has lost his way in recent seasons.
The player has endured a stop-start campaign with the Black Cats this season, with his obvious ability restricted by a series of niggling injuries, while a spell at Borussia Dortmund last year also failed to bear fruit.
But with the player facing an uncertain future, one of his old friends, Pogba, at least hopes he will get a Manchester United lifeline.
Januzaj, 21, told The Sun: “Paul is a great player. He made a different choice but eventually he was successful and he has returned. He remains a great player.
“He’s a very good friend. At United, we were always together. We went to dinner together, played the PlayStation. He was a brother to me.
“Of course, Paul asks if I’ll be back at Manchester United. He wants to play with me. But I am now at Sunderland and I have to do what’s right for the club.
“These are decisions from above. I’m a professional footballer and I have to remain professional and work.”
Januzaj has 18 months remaining on his Manchester United deal and he admits his first aim is win Jose Mourinho’s approval.
Lyon and Marseille are among the clubs waiting to pounce if he does not get a chance – but staying with United would be his first choice.
He added: “My goal is always to play at Manchester United. But you should always keep your ears open and keep options open.
“You cannot play for the future. I have a contract until 2018. There are many clubs interested. It is up to me to work, the rest will come.
“I never had any problems with Mourinho. He is a top coach. Last summer, they asked me to play a year on loan, to get some game-time because I had not played for a year.
“I joined Sunderland for playing time and to continue to make progress. After this season we’ll see again.
“I’ve always had confidence in my football qualities. I’ve never been afraid of anything.”