Paul Pogba and Lionel Messi.

Paul Pogba: What I thought of Lionel Messi when we first played each other in 2015

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It's been a tough second season at Manchester United for Paul Pogba, but at 25 years old time is on the Frenchman's side to realise his potential and become one of the world's best players.

In order for that to happen, though, he and Jose Mourinho must work together to finally find his best position in the middle of the park.

When played in a midfield two alongside Nemanja Matic, Pogba has looked lost at times, while he hasn't overly impressed when given the freedom to roam further forward.

It must be said that United's defensive style of play under Mourinho also doesn't suit the France international, who thrives when he has attacking options around him.

Pogba recently admitted he used to watch videos of Brazilian Ronaldo and Diego Maradona but realised he needed to watch players in his own position in order to learn.

"When I was little I looked at [Zinedine] Zidane, Ronaldinho, Ronaldo, [Lionel] Messi," he told TyC Sports. "I had videos of Maradona, Pele, Kaka, of many players.

"I wanted to have all the virtues that those players had. Now, I look more at players like [Andres] Iniesta, Yaya Toure, also [Kevin] De Bruyne, who is young, [Luka] Modric."


If there's one player from the first list that Pogba should continue watching, though, it's Messi, who is without a doubt one of the world's finest passers of the ball.

In the same interview, Pogba recalled the first time he ever faced the Argentine during the 2014/15 Champions League final between Juventus and Barcelona in 2015.

Barca won the game 3-1 and even though Messi didn't get on the scoresheet, Pogba remembers thinking how small yet how special he was with his low centre of gravity.

Juventus v FC Barcelona  - UEFA Champions League Final

"The first time I was with him was in the Champions League final [between Juventus and Barcelona in 2015]. He was very small," said the United star.

"Messi and football are two things that go together. I enjoy watching at him, he does things that nobody does.

"He has a stature that nobody has, something special for him, everything is special. He's a player who has football inside him, who feels it, it's incredible."

Small, special and capable of doing things no one else can - yeah, that's pretty much Messi.

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Lionel Messi
Zinedine Zidane
Manchester United
Paul Pogba
UEFA Champions League

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