One of the biggest doubts regarding Manchester United lies in the future of Paul Pogba and Juan Mata. Both players have been linked with moves away from Old Trafford, and there could be news regarding them quite soon. In fact, recent reports have indicated that this pair could effectively be on their way out of the club and towards Italy.
However, would this be the best scenario for The Red Devils? Let’s analyse both players individually:
Between a rocky relationship with Jose Mourinho and poor displays in important matches, there aren’t many fans who are fond of what Pogba has done this season. The Frenchman has often looked as if “he doesn’t care” about his status at Manchester United and there have been multiple reports regarding his future.
Both Juventus and FC Barcelona have looked as favourites to sign him, but the Serie A giants have been in pole position to acquire him for quite a while. Recent reports have indicated that The Red Devils would be open to let him go in order to bolster the team’s transfer budget for the January transfer window.
The Spaniard’s case is a bit more complicated since he is current playing the final year of his current contract. And right now there haven’t been indications of a potential extension. Even though Jose Mourinho has been quite vocal regarding his desire to extend the former Valencia and Chelsea star, Mata is open to leave in order to find regular first-team football. Something he hasn’t been able to accomplish at Old Trafford even if he has been playing more of late.
Juventus are monitoring Mata’s situation closely. There is still time to decide, but there are no signs of the club leaning one way or the other. And to make things even more complicated, there is the fact that Mata is eligible to negotiate with foreign – non-UK – teams if he hasn’t signed a new deal by January 1, 2019. So it seems The Red Devils need to act quickly. Otherwise, they risk at losing him for free.
So what should the team do?
Pogba is not the kind of player you “sell to increase the transfer budget”; if anything, United could part ways with Alexis Sanchez for that since the Chilean has been extremely disappointing since joining the Old Trafford side. So Pogba should stay with the team. With his problems of looking complacent and desinterested at times, he has still been one of the best players on the current squad.
The club should follow the same path with Mata. He might not be a full-time starter, but he has been playing well of late. His versatility is a plus, and he is quite used to the Premier League’s pace. Plus, who says he will be a regular starter in Juventus, one of the most talented teams in Europe when it comes to their attack?
Neither will be cheap, but United should fight to keep them both on the club. Undoubtedly, that’s the right move at the moment.