Every transfer move is a chess match; the seller trying to get paid as much as possible for a baggage, the buyer wrangling for a bargain. The summer is far spent but this duel is far from over: Paul Pogba’s signature on a contract to seal his move to Manchester United and Juventus getting the record fee for the most expensive player in history.
In the aftermath of United’s catastrophic, appalling, deplorable and abysmal couple of seasons in which they have failed to qualify for the UEFA Champions league in two of the last three league campaigns, the hierarchy of the club sense a real opportunity to get back into the upper echelons of world football. Luring Mourinho into the fold was as good a statement signing as any, and since then top, top players have joined the bandwagon as a consequence.
The Special One is renowned for his winning ability and prowess in forging successful teams of gladiators using transfer kitty. The Portuguese is hot on Pogba’s heels and has got everyone talking about if the player is worth the amount he is being touted by Raiola and Juventus. Some of the facts regarding this highly debated subject will be laid out below.
Pressure of the price tag
According to reports, the deal to sign Pogba is about €120million. The resulting effect of this supposedly imminent transfer is enormous amount of pressure on Pogba to consistently deliver for United. Fans, the media, opposition would taunt and jibe at the slightest form of adversity. Pogba will witness uncharted form of attention, the like of which he has never seen before, and at the youthful age of 23, it remains to be seen if it would prove too much to handle. It is not so much the fee that proves problematic with record signings, it is the attention. Sometime, down the line in January 2017, I’m envisioning the headlines in the UK tabloids reading something like: The 120million Man Fails to Inspire His Team in A Dismal Defeat to Chelsea.
Legendary former Manchester United player Scholes was recently quoted as saying: “I just don’t think he is worth £86m. For that sort of money, you want someone who is going to score 50 goals a season like Ronaldo or Messi. Pogba is nowhere near there yet.” To echo his sentiments, in my estimation, some playing positions simply cannot be worth €120m at the moment. Goals are the most important element of the game. It decides games. If a player’s job description or ability doesn’t directly involve scoring tons of goals, it would be difficult to rationalise shelling out a world record transfer fee for him. For instance, no matter how talented security personnel are, they should never be paid as much as employees directly in charge of making profit for a company.
Mins per chance created
Goals & Assists created
Looking at his numbers in recent years, it is obvious that his growth and improvement as a player have been consistent. “He has a rare talent and is unique.” Juventus great Alessandro Del Piero noted last year. “He has great mobility and technique, combined with an impressive physicality. And he is improving.” Pogba was named to the 2015 UEFA Team of the Year as well as the 2015 FIFA FIFPro World XI, after helping Juventus to the 2015 UEFA Champions League final. He has been a key player and starter for his team since 2013 which affirms his massive talent and experience on the biggest stage in football at a very young age.
Creativity and Versatility
Lilian Thuram famously called Pogba the trascinatore meaning the feeder – and with the Frenchman conjuring the most assists in the Serie A this past season who can blame him? Combine that with one of the best and legendary strikers of his generation in Zlatan Ibrahimovic and you may have an on-field combustion reaction. He has been deployed as a deep-lying playmaker, a winger at times, a result of being multi-talented and versatile.
Through the dynamic of this transfer window, United are attempting to redefine the asking price of players in the market. Maybe United know they are overpaying for him, but after all said and done, they realise he is a significant upgrade on anything they have currently and they can afford it. They are fast losing patience and crave earnestly a return to their glory days. Will this potential blockbuster deal pay off and bring the desired result? The world is watching.
Article by : Raymond Olamijulo (Columinst)