Pogba a £90m problem, not a £90m game changer – pundits

Daniel Roberts

The world’s most expensive footballer Paul Pogba has been labelled a ‘defensive liability’ by Frank Lampard and Jamie Carragher.

After a poor and uninspiring performance during Manchester United’s 1-1 draw against Bournemouth, Pogba has been criticised heavily by both Lampard and Carragher.

During their analysis of United’s game on Sky’s Monday Night Football, both former Premier League stars questioned the £89.3million-man’s contribution since re-joining the Red Devils in the summer.

“He’s not a game changer,” said Lampard.

“It was a signal of their intentions to spend £90m on someone I would say isn’t a finished article,” the former Chelsea man added.

“When you have a £90million price tag you wonder more … and you’re left still thinking what player he is. He hasn’t quite delivered and he hasn’t been a game-changer.

“He has fantastic attributes. He is strong, great feet, bigger and quicker than most. But at this stage of the season, I am still wondering, what is his best position? What kind of player is he? What does he want to be?

“He has potential. We need to wait until next season to see if he’s improving. But I do believe that is in him. If you spend £90m, you don’t want a £90m problem. I’m sure Jose Mourinho will solve it but at the moment he’s not fluent.”

Carragher also had his say, although he was far more brutal with his assessment of the France international.

“He’s still nowhere near good enough and hasn’t got the discipline,” said the Champions League-winning former Liverpool defender.

“He’s a liability defensively. What he does give you is a fantastic passing range. There’s no doubt he has a great relationship with Ibra[himovic].”

Jose Mourinho: Looking forward to Pogba v Pogba

Lampard, who played under Jose Mourinho for four full seasons, argued that his former manager was using Pogba in the wrong way.

“When Jose Mourinho is playing a two [in midfield] he wants them to defend but he’s not busting a gut to get back. He realises [that he should get back but it is] far too late,” Lampard said.

“My question is how much do you want him in these deep roles? For me, Michael Carrick is in the team to play deep. If he’s not close enough he’s not going to get the numbers. You’ve got this player you want to get into your team but what’s the best place for him?

“I see him as eager. Maybe he’s over-eager.”