Manchester United are heading for a multi-million pound transfer fight with rivals Manchester City over £60million target Paul Pogba – Chelsea are also interested in the talented midfielder.
French publication L’Equipe claim sources have informed them that Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini sees Pogba as the next Yaya Toure, but that Manchester United are also keen on a reunion with the France international.
However, it also suggests that Pogba is not in a rush to leave Juventus, where he has become an integral member of the starting XI under Antonio Conte and has a contract lasting until the summer of 2016. Any bid for Pogba is likely to interest Chelsea too, as recent reports claimed Jose Mourinho was keen on the midfielder and had told Stamford Bridge officials to be prepared to offer a massive £60million for him.
Huge bidding war imminent?
With all three big-spending Premier League giants Manchester United, Chelsea and Manchester City interested in him – not to mention Real Madrid, another team credited with an interest in L’Equipe – a bidding war could ensue, which would see the price rocket past the reported asking price.
Juventus are unlikely to be keen to see the 21-year-old go any time soon, but will be happy that interest is coming in from such wealthy clubs if it does come to that.
Letting Pogba leave Manchester United after failing to agree a new contract is often cited as one of Sir Alex Ferguson’s biggest mistakes while in charge and it looks as though it could cost the Old Trafford club a large sum of money if they are to bring him back.
Chelsea have already made the acquisition of former Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas for central midfield, seen as a replacement for released legend Frank Lampard, but there is also doubt over the future of John Obi Mikel and Pogba would be a significant upgrade in that area.
Meanwhile, Manchester City got some unexpected trouble in the aftermath of their brilliant charge to the Premier League title when Yaya Toure’s future was thrown into doubt over a bizarre incident over the marking of his birthday. However, the later news that his brother, Ibrahim, was seriously ill and sadly passed away last month, put a different angle on the situation.
Differences appear to have been resolved and Toure expected to stay at Etihad Stadium for next season, but at 31 years old it is normal that a successor be lined up. Pogba’s sensational form has meant he is being viewed as the man to take up the mantle of the Ivorian.