Alex Ferguson is known to have an eye for young players. But the ex United manager made a remark about Mino Raiola when delivering a speech to Sale Sharks rugby club that proved that he is an excellent judge of character too. Ferguson was quoted ,
“There are one or two football agents I simply do not like, and Mino Raiola is one of them.”
The recent events have made it all too clear to the United supporters why Sir Alex despised Mino Raiola. He may be regarded as one of the chief reasons why Paul Pogba is unsettled at United.
Pogba has evidently not been able to replicate his Juventus form at United so far. He has been inconsistent and often unavailable when the team was in need. But, a match winning performance against Manchester City reminded United fans of his capabilities as a player.
Pogba has set such lofty standards at Juventus that a 17-18 season of 6 goals and 10 assists is regarded as below par for the French International.
It is a known fact that players coming from a different leagues tend to struggle at Premier League, but Pogba had been under attack ever since his arrival by pundits and manager alike. Sometimes for his hairstyle, sometimes for his struggles on the pitch and sometimes for his excessive social media activities, criticism flowed in all forms.
But one of the most influential factors that a footballer has around himself is the agent which was overlooked until recently when It was alleged that Mino Raiola, in a brave move offered Pogba along with Mkhitaryan To City in the January transfer window. On April 6, the BBC reported Guardiola saying
“Two months ago he offered me Mkhitaryan and Pogba to play with us”.
Mino Raiola later denied having talked to Guardiola. But, it is well known that he made the availability of both his clients known to Manchester City. A lot has been said about the authenticity about the claims of Pep Guardiola, since the whole news broke out.
As the news of Barcelona interest flowed in, it was again Raiola at the center of the controversy. It was reported that Raiola has offered Pogba to Barcelona as Pogba was allegedly unhappy at United.The rumors were so persistent that it was reported that United even identified a replacement in the form of Sergej Milinkovic-Savic should Pogba leave.
Mino Raiola after having already registered his name in the bad books of United supporters further fell from grace with his recent comments on United legend Paul Scholes.
Paul Scholes told Optus Sports
“There’s a lack of leaders in the team, that’s why we thought Pogba might be the ideal candidate to be that leader but he wasn’t there [on Sunday].
He had another really poor game. He’s so inconsistent,” in the latest of his criticisms of Paul Pogba.
In a scathing attack on Paul Scholes for his criticism of Paul Pogba Mino Raiola tweeted:
Paul Scholes should become sports director and advise Woodward to sell Pogba. Would be sleepless nights to find Pogba a new club @paulpogba
— Mino Raiola (@MinoRaiola) August 21, 2018
The roles of Agents in the career of a footballer has gained importance.in recent years. The situation of Paul Pogba is somewhat a fitting example of how agents like Mino Raiola can devise moves. Moves that possibly profit the agent more rather than the client.
Paul Pogba has tried handling the situation with Mourinho and the constant criticism, professionally. But being offered to a range of clubs can deter the focus of even the best footballers and to some extent effect their performances on the pitch too.
Neither the United hierarchy nor the United fans have taken well to the efforts of Mino Raiola. The only thing that seems to be truly suffering are the performances of Paul Pogba amid all the distractions.
It would not be surprising if Guardiola’s treatment of Yaya Toure is repeated by Mourinho in his treatment of Paul Pogba by blaming and punishing the player in the long run for his agents actions and statements.