English Premiership

'Matic will help unlock Pogba's talents'

2017-08-01 18:07
Paul Pogba (Getty Images)

London - The signing of workhorse Nemanja Matic should allow Manchester United to make better use of gifted France midfielder Paul Pogba in the coming years, the club's former forward Brian McClair said.

United manager Jose Mourinho acquired the tall Serbian enforcer from Premier League rivals and champions Chelsea for a reported fee ranging from £40 million to 50 million on a three-year contract on Monday.

"United need someone who sits there behind Pogba, who played his best football when (current United captain) Michael Carrick also played last season," McClair told ESPNFC (www.espnfc.com).

"Michael is coming to the end of a wonderful career, so United need someone who can do something similar but who will be more mobile in the coming years."

With Pogba a regular starter for United, Matic looks set to compete for a midfield slot with the 36-year old Carrick, Spaniard Ander Herrera and Belgian enforcer Marouane Fellaini.

"In the short term, I could see that someone like Matic would fit in," McClair said.

"In some games, Paul Pogba has been in the wrong place and it has stifled his abilities which United bought him for."

Matic, who turned 29 on Tuesday, won two Premier League titles in his second stint with Chelsea, having been offloaded to Portuguese giants Benfica in 2011 during his first spell with the club under Mourinho.

Pogba, who was shipped out from United to Juventus by Alex Ferguson in 2012 as a 19-year old, returned to Old Trafford last year for a then world record fee of £89 million pounds and endured a patchy comeback.

With Matic boosting the array of ball-winners at United, the physical yet talented Frenchman should be allowed to play further upfield to make use of his greatest skills.

"Pogba's attributes are all about attacking," said McClair.

"He can find a pass, beat a player and has fantastic skills. He can score goals. For him to have the best opportunity of success at Old Trafford, Pogba needs to be playing in the final third of the pitch as much as possible."

Matic could make his competitive debut for last season's Europa League winners United against Champions League holders Real Madrid in the Uefa Super Cup showdown next Tuesday in Macedonia's capital Skopje.

Matic is United's third signing this summer, following Romelu Lukaku from Everton and Victor Lindelof from Benfica.  

NEXT ON SPORT24X

What To Read Next

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Fixtures
Saturday, 22 September 2018
Fulham v Watford, Craven Cottage 13:30
Liverpool v Southampton, Anfield 16:00
Cardiff City v Manchester City, Cardiff City Stadium 16:00
Leicester City v Huddersfield Town, King Power Stadium 16:00
Manchester United v Wolverhampton Wanderers, Old Trafford 16:00
Crystal Palace v Newcastle United, Selhurst Park 16:00
Burnley v AFC Bournemouth, Turf Moor 16:00
Brighton & Hove Albion v Tottenham Hotspur, The American Express Community Stadium 18:30
Sunday, 23 September 2018
West Ham United v Chelsea, London Stadium 14:30
Arsenal v Everton, Emirates Stadium 17:00
Saturday, 29 September 2018
West Ham United v Manchester United, London Stadium 13:30
Arsenal v Watford, Emirates Stadium 16:00
Manchester City v Brighton & Hove Albion, Etihad Stadium 16:00
Everton v Fulham, Goodison Park 16:00
Wolverhampton Wanderers v Southampton, Molineux Stadium 16:00
Newcastle United v Leicester City, St. James' Park 16:00
Huddersfield Town v Tottenham Hotspur, The John Smith's Stadium 16:00
Chelsea v Liverpool, Stamford Bridge 18:30
Logs
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team
Vote

Who will claim the Premier League title at the end of the 2018/19 season?

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter

Featured

The 2018/19 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.