Former Manchester United coach Rene Meulensteen has discussed Paul Pogba’s struggles at Old Trafford after another inconsistent season.
The France international is still to really show his full potential as a Man Utd player after a high-profile transfer from Juventus in 2016.
Pogba’s form has been the subject of much discussion in his time as a United player, with former manager Jose Mourinho often critical of him, while pundits have also expected more.
Meulensteen has given some insight into where things might be going wrong for Pogba, however, stressing that he’s a player who needs good midfield partners alongside him.
The former Red Devils coach believes the 26-year-old has often benefited from having the energetic Ander Herrera alongside him in the middle of the park, while his best form for Juventus and France has come alongside world class players like N’Golo Kante and Arturo Vidal.
“He clearly struggles to dictate the game if he doesn’t have good enough players around him,” Meulensteen told Training Ground Guru.
“With Juve and France he did extremely well, but had players like Andrea Pirlo, Claudio Marchisio and Arturo Vidal with him in Turin, and N’Golo Kante for France.
“The pace of the game is also much slower in Italy than it is in the Premier League, where it’s constant action and you have to be urgent both in and out of possession. If you look at some of Pogba’s best games for United, they’ve been alongside Ander Herrera. The two of them are complementary.
“Herrera gives Pogba the platform to get in the box and play those searching passes, because he keeps the balance. He’s able to stop the fires, is mobile, can pick the right passes and has really good game understanding.
“I don’t think the other central midfielders we’ve seen have been able to provide that same platform.”
Herrera is nearing the end of his United contract, so this is a rather worrying piece of information from Meulensteen, with a new quality midfield signing surely essential for MUFC this summer.