Manchester United have failed to match Paul Pogba's ambitions, says Mino Raiola
By Michael Kelleher
Last Updated: 23/01/20 9:26am
Paul Pogba's agent Mino Raiola says Manchester United have failed to match the French midfielder's ambition since he re-joined the club in 2016.
United broke the world transfer record to re-sign Pogba from Juventus in an £89m deal but the 26-year-old has grown frustrated at Old Trafford and expressed a desire for a "new challenge" last summer.
Raiola said in August he was "in the process" of finding a new club for his client but was unable to push through a move.
Pogba, who is currently out injured, has one year remaining on his contract.
Raiola was non-committal when asked if Frenchman would move this summer, but he indicated United's ongoing struggles on the pitch would factor into his decision.
"I don't say anything for sure. Today he is not happy because he is not playing. He is recovering. Paul if he does not play he is not happy," Raiola told Sky Sports News.
"But I saw him go back to Manchester United when people did not think he would go back. People tend to forget that. People tend to imagine that Manchester United was the only club that he could have signed for. He chose Manchester United.
"Everybody knows the ambition from both parts is not being met the last years. Let's be honest, let's talk about the elephant in the room.
"So we need to see in the summer if Paul is still in the plans of Manchester United and if Manchester United is still in the plans of Paul."
Raiola said earlier this month United are "a club out of touch with reality" who would "ruin Maradona, Pele and Maldini".
That prompted United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to say he would speak to Pogba about the comments.
Raiola admitted his quotes were controversial but he believes his relationship with United, particularly executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward, remains intact.
"The quotes were a little bit strong but I think what I meant is Manchester United needs to get their project right," Raiola said.
"My relationship with Manchester United is good. It is a professional, honest relationship. I have never spoken to Ole [Gunnar Solskjaer] but I hear he is a fantastic person and a fantastic man.
"My relationship with Ed is a transparent and honest one and we tell each other what we like and don't like."
Pogba is currently recovering from surgery on his right ankle, which he underwent earlier this month. The injury has troubled him all season and he has been limited to just seven appearances in the Premier League.
Raiola says Pogba rushed back for games against Watford and Newcastle over the Christmas period and will not make that mistake again.
Asked about a return date for Pogba, Raiola said: "As soon as possible obviously, for himself, for the fans and for the club [but] I am not able to say how long. It is not up to me.
"But as soon as it is responsible to come back. Maybe his willingness before… He should have waited before. Then we would not be where we are now.
"We don't want to make that mistake again."
Asked if he would discuss a new contract for Pogba with United, Raiola said: "My job is to listen. God gave me two ears and one mouth so maybe it is better listening sometimes than talking."
Raiola made it clear his priority is to make Pogba happy and says there are ways to make that happen.
"I expect my players to be happy and I expect the clubs to be happy," Raiola said. "That is my work. I don't want to walk in front of what will be happening in the summer.
"For now he needs to be getting fit and then it is my job to try and get both parties - if possible - happy.
"If one of those parties is not happy, then there are other ways to resolve that."
'He feels he went to Man Utd almost under a false prospectus'
Sky Sports News reporter Kaveh Solhekol writes...
Mino Raiola is one of the most successful and high-profile agents in the world. Not only does he look after Paul Pogba, he also looks after players like Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
You have to read between the lines of what he is saying. Watching that whole interview in full you get the feeling that Paul Pogba is not going to be a Manchester United player next season.
He didn't want to come out and say that himself but the message was there. The message was that Paul Pogba feels he can do better than Manchester United.
Manchester United are in a transition period at the moment. They are not in the Champions League, they are in the Europa League and, as far as Paul Pogba is concerned, he is a World Cup winner, he is somebody who is going to be starring for France at Euro 2020 this summer.
He feels that he went to Manchester United almost under a false prospectus. He felt that a team of world-class players was going to be built around him who were not only going to be challenging for the Premier League title but they were going to be challenging to win the Champions League regularly and that has not happened.
Watching that interview I just get the feeling that Paul Pogba will be leaving Manchester United this summer.
It happens every summer with Mino Raiola. He is very forward about looking after his players and making sure that he gets the best possible deals for them and you just feel it is going to be a long goodbye for Paul Pogba at Manchester United.
How to follow the January transfer window with Sky Sports
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