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Solskjaer discusses Pogba future and his early season assist record

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has answered questions about the future of Paul Pogba amid suggestions his long term future could still be at Manchester United.

Pogba has been linked with leaving Manchester United for several years now, with the Frenchman’s agent, Mino Raiola, stating his client’s career at Old Trafford was ‘over’ less than 12 months ago.

According to reports on Monday though, Manchester United’s summer business – the signings of Cristiano Ronaldo, Raphael Varane and Jadon Sancho – have left the midfielder ‘leaning towards’ extending his deal at Old Trafford rather than seeking an exit on a free transfer next summer.

 

Speaking ahead of United’s Champions League opener against Young Boys, Solskjaer was quizzed on the reports, insisting that the club need to win trophies in order to match players expectations.

“Yeah, well, it’s up to us now to get results and to prove to ourselves that we can win trophies,” he told his pre-match press conference.

“Because I think everyone who signs for Man United wants to win trophies, wants to be part of a winning Man United – that’s the most magical feeling in the world, to be part of a winning Man United team.

“So, yep, I think everyone is just focusing on doing our best and let’s see where we go.”

United are unbeaten in their opening four Premier League matches to currently sit at the top of the division on goal difference, the Red Devils scoring a joint league-high 11 goals so far.

Of those 11 goals, seven have been assisted by Paul Pogba, and while Solskjaer praised the performances of his number 6, he was keen not to get carried away by the stats, saying that the final pass shouldn’t always be a measure of who is credited with the assist.

“Paul’s come back in good shape and he’s worked really hard over the summer. He came back lean and fit,” he said.

“But what does an assist consist of? A square pass to Bruno [Fernandes] and then Bruno hits the top corner? Or when Paul plays a great pass through and Mason [Greenwood] runs past?

“So Paul’s always been a top passer of the ball, we know that. He’s one of the best passers of the ball in European football.

“So he’s probably not got assists from his best passes this season, so I don’t count assists at all. That’s just a social media [thing], or you the media. But Paul has played well, that’s for sure.”

Pogba was credited with the assist for Jesse Lingard’s goal against Newcastle at the weekend, though the Norwegian pointed to Anthony Martial’s dummy as an integral part of the goal.

“I would give Anthony Martial an assist for Jesse, when he leaves the ball, like Yorke and Cole [used to do]. There’s so much more than stats.

“I think David [De Gea] deserves one [for his part in Bruno Fernandes’ goal]!”

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See also – Premier League Team of the Week

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