Paul Pogba has rejoined Man United, but what has changed at Old Trafford four years on?
By Richard Morgan
Last Updated: 09/08/16 12:18pm
With Paul Pogba having re-signed for Manchester United, we take a look at what has changed at the club since the Frenchman left to join Juventus.
Pogba, 23, quit the Red Devils for Juve in July 2012 after spending four years at Old Trafford, before being lured back by Jose Mourinho this summer in a deal worth £89m.
Inside Pogba's early years
Nick Wright talks to Paul Pogba's former team-mates in the Manchester United youth team.
If a week is considered a long time in politics, then four years is an eternity in the world of football, even more so at a club of United's size.
But what is different, and what has not altered much, at the Theatre of Dreams since Pogba swapped Manchester for Turin?
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When Pogba left United in the summer of 2012, Sir Alex Ferguson had just finished his 24th completed season in charge of the club.
However, in the intervening years, the club have seen David Moyes, Ryan Giggs (in an interim capacity) and Louis van Gaal all try and fill the Scot's big shoes at the Theatre of Dreams.
It will be Mourinho, though, who manages the France international on his return to the north west after the Special One replaced Van Gaal in United's dugout in May.
United still had a core of experienced stars at the club when Pogba opted to swap Manchester for Turin four years ago, including the likes of Patrice Evra, Rio Ferdinand, Jonny Evans, Michael Owen, Dimitar Berbatov, Giggs, Nemanja Vidic, Park Ji-Sung and Paul Scholes, who came out of retirement that season.
In fact, Giggs even broke Sir Bobby Charlton's record for the most number of starts (757) for United in that campaign.
However, Pogba will discover only captain Wayne Rooney, Phil Jones, David de Gea, Chris Smalling, Michael Carrick, Ashley Young and Antonio Valencia remain from that 2011/12 squad.
The contents of the trophy cabinet at Manchester United hasn't changed too much in Pogba's four-year absence. Pogba's exit from United in July 2012 came at the end of a rare trophy-less campaign for the club under Ferguson, aside from the FA Community Shield.
In stark contrast to Juventus, United have since struggled to get their hands on much silverware, winning just the 2012/13 Premier League and last season's FA Cup in the intervening four-year period.
United started the 2011/12 campaign competing in the Champions League for the 16th season in a row under Ferguson.
After a shock elimination at the group stage, however, United's manager did hand Pogba his European debut in a round-of-16 second-leg Europa League tie at Athletic Bilbao in March 2012.
And the Frenchman will once again find himself playing in Europe's second-tier competition next season after Van Gaal failed to guide the Red Devils into the top four of the Premier League last time around.
It was Rooney who topped the club's scoring charts at the end of the 2011/12 campaign after netting 27 and 34 times in the league and all competitions respectively.
Four years on and United's leading marksman was Anthony Martial last season, with just 11 Premier League goals and 17 strikes in total to his name.
In stark contrast, Mourinho has already brought in Pogba himself, Eric Bailly and Henrikh Mkhitaryan at a combined cost of £145.3m.
Pogba will be playing to average crowds of 75,329 fans at Old Trafford next season, up slightly on the 73,376 who attended games at the Theatre of Dreams in the 2011/12 campaign.
The 23-year-old will now be showcasing his vast array of skills in front of the newly named Sir Bobby Charlton Stand at the ground.
Young at heart
When Pogba opted to join the Old Lady of Italian Football, new United star Marcus Rashford - who at that point was still very much part of the club's academy set-up - had just made his debut for the England U16s.
Now the striker is a full England international, having appeared at Euro 2016 at the age of 18.
When Pogba pulls on the United kit again, it will be an Adidas-made jersey sponsored by the American car manufacturer Chevrolet.
Whereas when he quit the Red Devils in 2012, the club shirt was produced by Nike and sponsored by US insurance company Aon.
One thing that has not changed, though, in the four years since Pogba's departure from United is the enormous weight of expectation on the club heading into the new season.
The player's big-money return, though, has only served to increase those expectations, with Mourinho even claiming he was targeting a first Premier League title since Ferguson's departure next season.
However, with Pogba's services to call upon now, maybe United are set to return to those trophy-laden days…