Paul Pogba didn’t do himself any harm with his performance on Saturday, as France ran out 2-1 winners in a tightly contested game with Australia. Les Blues struggled for fluency in their World Cup opener, but it was the Manchester United midfielder who made the difference, seeing his touch deflect off Aziz Behich in the penalty area and float into the net in the 80th minute .
The United star has been the subject of intense scrutiny since moving from Juventus for £89m in 2016, with plenty of criticism directed his way for his attitude, flamboyance and even the colour of his hair. But the Frenchman is seemingly taking it all in his stride.
“It seems I have less right than others to make mistakes,” he said during an interview with Telefoot, in quotes via ESPN. “It’s funny, I went from being the biggest transfer in the world to the most criticised player in the world. The critics will always be there. That’s football.
“When I was little with my friends, we always used to take the mickey out of each other, saying, ‘You were good, you were bad.’ It’s what happens on every football pitch and I treat the criticism now like I did when I was playing on the street as a kid.
“I’m out there having fun — and that’s the only answer I can give to all those people who criticise me or think I am this or that. It’s not a big deal. Everybody has opinions.”
This is the sort of attitude that you want to see from a player who has come under fire frequently over the last six months. If United are to make this coming season a success, then Pogba mustmust su be at the heart of it, and hopefully, the former academy graduate will be ready for his third term at Old Trafford.