Paul Ince hasn’t held his punches as he has delivered some forthright opinions in an open letter to Man Utd executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward.
The 51-year-old knows all about what it takes to succeed at Old Trafford following a successful stint with the club between 1989 and 1995.
In turn, it’s fair to say that he isn’t impressed with certain individuals in the current squad, but also how the club is being run off the pitch starting with Woodward.
Never shy in expressing his opinions since hanging up his boots and taking up life as a pundit, Ince has specifically targeted Paul Pogba and Jesse Lingard for criticism in an open letter addressed to Woodward, while the United chief himself has come under fire too.
“For me, a lot of the issues come down to the attitude of the squad. The players are doing exactly what they want, when they want, and there’s no control from above. It wouldn’t happen under Fergie and it wouldn’t happen under Pep Guardiola,” he is quoted as saying in the latter by the Mirror.
“Jesse has been bang average this year and if I’d performed the way he did last season the last thing I would do is post anything on social media.
“Then there’s Pogba. Why did he wait until the end of the season to say he wants to go with a sly comment in the press?
“It’s a lack of respect for your team-mates who can behave, and it’s a total lack of respect for playing for Manchester United.”
It’s difficult to disagree with Ince on the points he’s made. For all the talk about being a United player through and through having come through the academy, Lingard has managed 29 goals and 18 assists in 167 appearances for the senior side.
Now 26 years of age, more is surely needed from him or a replacement found to ensure Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has the quality required in that department.
As for Pogba, it’s difficult to understand some of his actions off the pitch, notably the decision to publicly suggest that he’s open to a new challenge, as noted by ESPN.
It doesn’t set the right tone for him, his teammates and the fans ahead of a new campaign, and while it looks as though he may well stay, as per BBC Sport, it’s not what anyone concerned wants to hear from one of their leading stars.