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Solskjaer Encouraged By Pogba Performance

  • 2 min read

Manchester United’s Paul Pogba is desperate to make up for lost time after his long injury absence, manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said after the France midfielder impressed in Friday’s 1-1 draw with Tottenham Hotspur.

Pogba, who had not played since Dec. 26 due to an ankle injury, came off the bench in the second half and won a penalty that Bruno Fernandes converted to equalise for United.

The 27-year-old Pogba has been criticised at times for a perceived lack of effort during his United career, but turned in an all-round performance in their first game back since the season was halted in mid-March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It is great to see (Pogba) show his qualities and the contribution he made was big in us getting a penalty,” Solskjaer said. “He has had horrific injury-hit season and he is desperate to make up for lost time.

“Paul always has a point to prove to himself and to us. He expects a lot from himself and wants to be the best. He trains hard and loves football.”

Pogba completed 17 of 18 passes, made two blocks and recovered the ball four times in 34 minutes on the pitch in what was just his ninth appearance of the season.

“Paul did everything a midfielder should do, he tackled, won passes and showed some skills, so fantastic to have him back,” Solskjaer added.

“It has been great having him back training with us. On and off the pitch, he is such an enthusiastic and passionate boy. Everyone can see the quality he can provide.”

The draw kept United in fifth place, two points behind Chelsea, who have played a game less and travel to relegation-threatened Aston Villa on Sunday. Spurs stayed eighth in the table.