Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wants to build Manchester United team around ‘top class’ Paul Pogba


Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wants to build Manchester United team around ‘top class’ Paul Pogba

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has praised the improvement of Paul Pogba and wants to build the Manchester United team around him.

Pogba had a tempestuous relationship with former boss Jose Mourinho, which including him being stripped of his role as vice-captain back in September.

Pogba shone at Old Trafford on Boxing Day

However, since Mourinho’s departure, the Frenchman has excelled for United, assisting twice in the 5-1 win at Cardiff and netting a brace in the 3-1 Boxing Day victory over Huddersfield Town.

“I think Paul’s a top, top player,” Solskjaer said. “He’s one of the top players in the world. Attacking wise, he’s done really well but he’s a big lad who can win headers and tackles. He’s been the same as the others.

“The attitude has been perfect and that’s key; you should be tired towards the end of every single game.

“He’s been top-class and of course he’s someone that we’re looking to build a team, but there are so many quality players.”

Solskjar has challenged Romelu Lukaku and Alexis Sanchez to follow Pogba’s lead and up their game as the out-of-sorts stars close in on a United return.

“I think you put it the wrong way, because I cannot do anything for their performances on the pitch,” Solskjaer said. “Paul has done it himself, the players have done the performances.

“My chats with Anthony (Martial), Romelu, Alexis, whoever…(they have) not felt that they cannot produce their best of football.

Alexis Sanchez has struggled to make an impact at Old Trafford since arriving from Arsenal

“I’m here to guide them, help them on the path and then it’s up to them to do it on the pitch. I don’t agree that I have done that with Paul and I can do that with Romelu and Alexis.

“It’s up to them when they get a chance, that’s the name of the game when you are a footballer. You’ve got to do it yourself…you want help from your team-mates and your manager.

“I give them some guidelines, of course, there has been loads of talk about the expression, freedom of expression, but that’s how I’ve always been as a manager.

“You can’t tell all the players what to do in that position, they are here for a reason.