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Pogba can become football´s next all-action hero, claims Carragher

Paul Pogba’s blockbuster return to Manchester United has captured the imagination of the world, including Jamie Carragher, who believes football’s most expensive player can lead the sleeping English giants back to the Premier League summit.

After four successive Serie A titles, Pogba moved from Italian champions Juventus back to United for a world record free of almost £90million on Tuesday.

The announcement of Pogba’s return to Old Trafford, a place he departed on a free transfer in 2012, resembled a feature Hollywood film, with the 23-year-old’s glamorous unveiling lighting up social media.

With the attention now turning to the pitch as Pogba attempts to live up to his hefty price tag, former Liverpool and England defender Carragher is confident the France international will take the Premier League by storm.

“Forget about the money. For all that Paul Pogba is now the most expensive player in football history, Manchester United have not gambled,” Carragher wrote in his column for the Daily Mail. “This is not a transfer that has threatened their financial future. They could afford to break the bank.

“You also need to forget about comparing him to other players who have cost similar amounts. Jose Mourinho hasn’t brought Pogba back to do what Gareth Bale [£87m] or Cristiano Ronaldo [£80m] do for Real Madrid. That isn’t his game.

“What United have done is buy a young man who has the potential and talent to become the game’s next all-action hero. He can become the greatest midfielder in the world and drive his club back to the top.”

Carragher added: “To be a success, however, he is going to find himself compared to midfielders such as Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard and Yaya Toure, those men who were at the forefront of all the triumphs Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City enjoyed in the modern era.

“This is the challenge facing Pogba: can he drag United forward in the difficult moments? Some people are wondering, having seen him in at Euro 2016, whether he is more hype than substance…I thought he had a good tournament overall and showed flashes of brilliance.

“I don’t think the size of the fee will bother him. Pogba knows what pressure is, having played in a Champions League final for Juventus and the Euro 2016 final this summer, and he looked totally relaxed in the interviews that have been broadcast so far.

“This is a brilliant signing for the Premier League, not just United. For too long we have seen the finest talent around the world cherry-picked by Barcelona and Real Madrid, so it is encouraging Pogba chose to return to England rather than holding out for Spain.

“Everything about this four-time Serie A winner suggests he will have no trouble settling into English football: he’s powerful, athletic and I like his off-the-cuff tricks and dribbles. You don’t see many central midfielders doing that.”

Wed 10 Aug, 2016
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