In the 24 hours since Manchester United lost to Derby County in the League Cup, Paul Pogba was stripped of captaincy duties by boss Jose Mourinho, he was again linked with a move away from Old Trafford and the pair also had a “frosty exchange” on the training ground.
The viral video from training prompted almost every UK media outlet to report on the future of the feuding duo at Old Trafford.
Will the French midfielder leave, will it be the Portuguese boss heading for the exit or will they both stay? Whatever happens the Mourinho-Pogba pantomime is not likely to end any time soon.
We look at today’s headlines from the UK’s newspapers and websites…
Where do Manchester United go from here?
BBC Sport’s Simon Stone asks the question fans want answering. Mourinho says there is no fall-out with Pogba but after months of “media storms” can this really be true? Stone writes: “If it is true there has been no fall-out, it would suggest Pogba does not care, which would be a terrible situation for United to find themselves in.”
Is the Jose Mourinho era now over?
Sky Sports writer Adam Bate says the United gaffer is “a victim of his own success” but the Pogba issue underlines the challenges facing Mourinho.
United’s senior players ‘angry and frustrated’ with Mourinho
ESPN reports that Mourinho’s man-management this season has left several United stars “angry and frustrated”. Club sources say that this week’s antics have “bemused many within the dressing room”.
Every media outlet in football reported on Pogba and Mourinho’s tense exchange in training yesterday. The Sun reports that a social media post could have been to blame for the clash. “Jose Mourinho thought Paul Pogba was laughing at Manchester United’s loss to Derby when feuding pair clashed at training,” says the Sun. “Pogba posted a video on social media of himself and club-mate Andreas Pereira chuckling in the stands at Old Trafford.”
Woodward faces squad revolt
United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward has backed Mourinho over the Pogba captaincy issue but the Daily Star says this decision could lead to a “revolt” in the squad. The Star’s Jeremy Cross writes: “Woodward is refusing to consider sacking Mourinho despite the Portuguese’s increasingly erratic behaviour at Old Trafford. Mourinho’s long and troubled relationship with £90m midfielder Paul Pogba has sunk to a new low in the last 48 hours.”
Pogba determined to force Man Utd exit
What about the French’s star future then? The Daily Telegraph reports that Pogba informed the United bosses seven weeks ago that he wanted to leave Old Trafford. He has been linked with Barcelona and former club Juventus.
Mourinho stuck with Pogba
The Times reports that United intend to keep both Mourinho and Pogba and the pair will be “forced to keep working together” despite the escalating feud. The Times’s Paul Hirst writes: “Ed Woodward has no plans to get rid of the club’s manager nor their record signing, despite their frosty exchange at Carrington.”
Ready for round two?
Both Mourinho and Pogba returned to training at Carrington this morning. The Daily Mail says the pair are bidding to “win the power struggle currently engulfing the club”.