How Pogba’s trip to Miami sparked feud with Mourinho
A look at how Jose Mourinho’s relationship with Paul Pogba has become strained sine he took a trip to Miami to recover from injury.
Jose Mourinho’s long-term future at Manchester United has been plunged in to fresh doubt following their sobering 3-1 defeat to Liverpool at the weekend amid growing tensions within the squad. Widespread reports suggest that Mourinho has ‘lost the dressing room’ after falling out with a number of key players this season.
The Portuguese coach has publicly criticised the likes of Anthony Martial, Eric Bailly, Luke Shaw, Marcus Rashford, Phil Jones and Antonio Valencia at times over the past few months but his main focus has been Paul Pogba. It’s no secret that Mourinho and Pogba have been at odds with each other for some time now and their strained relationship is clearly having a detrimental affect at Old Trafford.
Things really turned sour between the two men when Mourinho was left distinctly unimpressed by Pogba’s decision to fly out to Miami while recovering from a hamstring injury in September. Pogba insisted he was heading to America for some much needed rest and relaxation while he recovered from his injury.
However, he infuriated his manager after being seen partying at nightclubs and spending time at the popular Miami Club casino in the south of Florida during his two-week break. It was a huge gamble by Pogba and it back-fired. The last thing Mourinho wanted was for his star player to be splashing his £250k-a-week wages in clubs and at casinos when he should be focussing on his fitness. Plenty of footballers attend casinos in their spare time and spend their money gambling, but it wasn’t wise for Pogba to do it in Miami after making out to his club it would be a quiet trip in the sun.
From then on, things have gradually gotten worse between Pogba and Mourinho with the pair involved in a heated exchange on the sidelines during United’s defeat to Tottenham in January before the midfielder was axed from the team amid reports he was barely on speaking terms with his manager.
Pogba has continued to test Mourinho’s patience in recent months after questioning his tactics and it led to the former Chelsea boss giving the player a dressing down on the training pitch after telling him he will never captain the club again. Pogba has now been left on the bench for United’s last two Premier League games and played just 15 minutes during the recent draw with Arsenal.
He’s clearly fallen out with Mourinho and it seems only one of the two men can remain at Old Trafford for the long-term as the situation is having a huge impact on the club – both on and off the field. There have been mounting rumours suggesting that Pogba could leave United in January with the likes of Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain supposedly interested by many fans would prefer to see Mourinho leave.
The so-called ‘Special One’ doesn’t seem so special anymore and Mourinho has lost his spark. He just doesn’t seem to be enjoying his job anymore and with United languishing sixth in the table – 19 points off top and 11 off the top four – the club may be better off sacking Mourinho and bringing in a manager who could get the best of out the likes of Pogba.
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