The news of Paul Pogba leaving Manchester United had been doing rounds somewhat quietly for some days. But it is only recently that the rumors have gathered pace.
The dawn of these rumors was last season. A series of dismal displays by Pogba, including the clash against Tottenham last season where he got subbed off after an apparent argument on the sidelines with Jose Mourinho, prompted the manager to bench him for a Premier League match against Huddersfield that many saw as a move to protect the player from fatigue. But a bench role in the crucial tie against Sevilla confirmed the relationship between the two had gone sour, despite both the player and the manager coming out and denying any reports of a rift.
It was only recently that Pogba admitted to have had certain differences with Mourinho. This prompted further speculation about his future.
It has been reported that super-agent Mino Raiola has been trying to engineer a move for Paul Poagba away from Manchester United. Rumors of moves to Barcelona and even back to Juventus in swap deal with Miralem Pjanic came up at the end of the World Cup.
The recent reports claim that Paul Pogba has been identified by Barcelona as one of their targets and the player and the the Catalan Giants have agreed personal terms.
United are supposedly furious with Mino Raiola for his secret effort of moving Pogba away from Old Trafford. However, the club have also been working on a backup plan in the event of the Frenchman leaving the club. The player they have identified as the replacement is the 23-year-old Serbian midfielder, Sergej Milinković-Savić.
Rumours linking the Mancunian giants to the midfielder originated at the start of the 2018 transfer window, as the retirement of Michael Carrick and the end of Marouane Fellaini’s contract meant that United had to reinforce their midfield. An impressive tally of 12 goals and 3 assists in the Italian League has attracted the attention of all European Giants. However the asking price and the acquirement of Brazilian midfielder Fred saw the interest cool down over time, and the rumors faded with it. But with the speculation of Pogba leaving, the rumours of replacing the 25-year-old with Milinković-Savić have resurfaced.
The asking price in this case would not be much of a stumbling block as it is safe to presume that United would not let Pogba leave for cheap. Lazio is reported to be asking around £138m for the young midfielder – a club record fee should United decide to go ahead and match it.
However with hours left, it seems doubtful that any of the moves would materialize as United allowing Pogba to leave would largely depend on how fast Milinković-Savić would be made available for transfer, both of which seems unlikely to take place in few hours.
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