Paul Pogba has fired back at critics ahead of their Europa League clash tonight.
Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba has spoken of the expectations on him as the world’s most expensive player, and has also dismissed suggestions that his off-field antics have undermined his form and focus and insisted he had long ago banished his “mountainous” £89 million transfer fee from his mind.
The 24-year old has yet to set the stage alight since his return to United, and has been constantly criticized for his off-the-field flamboyant style, especially by former Red Devils defender Rio Ferdinand, and he has now taken the time to speak on all these.
“What is on the pitch is on the pitch and what is outside the pitch is outside the pitch,” the United midfielder said ahead of the of their Europa League clash with Anderlecht. Read more: Man United legend hails Ndidi and Leicester's performance
“I love life. I like to dance. It doesn’t affect me on the pitch. The time is different. Before you wouldn’t do this and now you do it.
“In America, the basketball players listen to music. For me, it’s just enjoying life with Jesse Lingard. When I’m on the pitch, I’m serious. I’m focused and I want to win. I took it as advice because it’s a big club. I spoke with him [Ferdinand] and he told what he meant. It’s different generations, it’s nothing bad.
“The people are looking at me and they judge me on not scoring goals and stuff like this.
“I’m doing a job. I’m a midfield player and some people think I’m an attacking player. I give some assists to some people and they don’t score – it can happen.Read also: Drogba buys and signs for new club at 39!
“Nobody talks about this but it’s fine. People talk about the mountain of the transfer [fee]. People are looking me saying, ‘Pogba should score goals, Pogba should do this’. Sometimes if I can make the team win, I will do it. But my job is to be a midfielder, make the game, do some assists. If I was scoring the goals that hit the crossbar I don’t think people would speak like this.
“It’s true that I’ve had a lot of chances. But we keep trying and training hard to make it happen. I feel great. We won two trophies. Obviously I want to do better, you can always do better. We can forget about the transfer fee. It’s in the past.”
The former Juventus midfielder however admitted that he has had to readjust to the Premier League, but is convinced United can win the Europa League this term and finish in the top four.
“In Italy it’s more tactical. They score less goals. In England, they attack. The Premier League is very testing. When I signed here I knew I would play in the Europa League. It wasn’t a problem. I came here to do big challenges. The challenge is to go back to the Champions League and the players know that. To do big things, you need big players.”