Manchester United legend Paul Pogba has hit back at long term critic Graeme Souness by declaring he didn’t realize who the Liverpool legend was.
The Scot has repeatedly criticized Pogba since his £89m return to Old Trafford in 2016 and the frequency of his condemnation has become somewhat of a running joke with supporters.
Pogba has managed just two appearances since September but Souness has repeatedly aimed digs at the Frenchman and has criticized his performances, his attitude, his haircuts, his dancing along with his clothing taste since he rejoined the Red Devils.
The 27-year-old is famously relaxed but even he has been angered by Souness’s prolonged attacks and he took a dig at the Scot by declaring he didn’t recognize who the former Rangers manager was.
‘I didn’t even know who he was, really,’ Pogba told the United podcast.
‘I didn’t even know who he was. I heard he was a great player and stuff like that.’
‘I know the face but the name [no]. Like I said I’m not someone that watches a lot of [punditry], I watch a lot of football but I don’t stay after the game to listen to what they say about ‘Why they did this’ or ‘why they did that’. I like to focus on football’.
Previously in the podcast, Pogba was questioned much more generally about his critics.
The Frenchman took criticism for going to Paris during his recovery from an ankle injury but Pogba states he ignores the bad press because people are just trying to ‘sell’.
‘I guess they miss me, I don’t know? I’m not someone that looks at always at Sky News. After the games, when I watch it again I watch the game, not the comments,’ said Pogba.
‘When you know football, you don’t need someone to tell you what’s happening. Obviously what I hear when people are saying ‘Paul is doing this…Paul…Paul’ I don’t know.
‘One day maybe I will meet them [the critics] and ask them because I really want to know why. I am doing my recovery, I can be somewhere else and I hear something but I’m just doing my recovery, you know?’
‘If they want to speak they are allowed to speak, it’s their job to speak. I am used to it now. I am really used to it, it doesn’t bother me. It’s good to hear good stuff instead of bad stuff but when you play football, you know yourself. It’s what your manager and team-mates want, the rest is just talking. It’s selling stuff I think’.
The podcast was recorded prior to the Premier League season was suspended but Pogba stated that he was closing in on a return.
The Frenchman detailed his rise from United’s academy and said he learned first from Paul Scholes and then Andrea Pirlo at Juventus on what was necessary to become a top-level midfielder.
‘You learn a lot and you look at them,’ Pogba told the United Podcast.
‘I really learned and have been learning. It was unbelievable for me, seeing them training like that, and it pushed me.
‘Okay, I have to work hard and have a lot more to do. Pirlo and Scholes, are midfielders who control the game, the players to look at, and I learned from them, a lot.
‘I started as a striker and then a number 10 and then a number six. Thank God, I didn’t go to center-back! It was because I wanted to touch the ball too much.
‘I was the striker and dropping too much, so one coach told me: ‘Okay, play the number 10 and touch the ball more.’ I still loved the ball too much and had too many touches, so he put me at number six.’