Mino Raiola talks about Paul Pogba’s role at Manchester United and what he thinks about the criticism from the club’s former boss.
The powerful agent Mino Raiola, with clients such as Erling Braut Haaland, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Paul Pogba, is not known to have been a huge favorite at Old Trafford in recent years.
It started back in Sir Alex Ferguson’s time, when Paul Pogba was just a great talent and Ferguson decided to let the Frenchman leave the club.
Also read: Bale is totally slaughtered. Now he comes with a clarification
Pogba, who left United for Juventus in 2012, had already started working with Raiola. And in the book “Leading” which was published in 2015, Ferguson opened up about his thoughts on the transition.
– There are a couple of football agents I simply do not like. And Mino Raiola is one of them. Ever since I met him for the first time, I have never trusted him, wrote Ferguson, among others.
The former United boss was criticized by several teams when he let Pogba leave the club, but he blamed Raiola for Pogba’s disappearance at the time.
– We had Paul on a three-year contract, and we also had an option that made it possible to extend by one year. We were eager to sign it. But Raiola emerged as Pogba’s new agent, and our first meeting was a failure. We were like oil and water. From that moment we were done, Raiola had managed to integrate with Paul and his family, and the player ended up signing for Juventus, the Scot wrote in the book.
Raiola: – I do not care what he says
In a major interview with The Athletic along with another great agent, Jonathan Barnett, Raiola says he has never had anything against the criticism he received from Ferguson.
“That was the biggest compliment anyone could give me when Ferguson criticized me,” he says.
– Ferguson is used to people coming in and saying “yes sir, yes sir, yes sir, yes sir”. All I have to say is that when Ferguson left Manchester United, the club’s owners (The Glazers), by buying back Paul Pogba, said I was right. I did not want to take him away. He (Ferguson) did not believe in Paul Pogba.
Also read: Tuesday’s Premier League rumors
– So when Ferguson says “I do not like him”, it is the biggest compliment I can get. It’s like Sepp Blatter saying “I do not like him”. Fantastic. I do not care what Ferguson says, says Raiola.
– Is about what the market thinks
Pogba chose to return to Manchester in 2016. However, he has had to endure a lot of criticism from the English press since then.
Asked if he is not appreciated enough in England, Raiola says:
– It depends on whether you mean whether he is appreciated by the fans or by the professionals in the game. If you mean by the professionals, I talk to many sports directors, managers, coaches, and he is appreciated by many.
– I always say that there is only one truth to everything. It’s not about what I think, not what you think, but what the market thinks. So the day Paul Pogba no longer has a club, he is no longer valued, or underappreciated, says Raiola.
If Pogba does not have a very high status in England, however, the agent is clear that he is appreciated at Manchester United.
– I have at least heard from the club’s side that he will be, and from Solskjær’s side, so that is the only thing that matters, he says.
Claimed Solskjær was furious at Raiola
In December, Raiola came up with the sensational message that
A few days later, after United had been eliminated from the group stage of the Champions League, however, the Italian moved out and moderated his statements.
– In England they are very sensitive when you talk about Pogba. I just expressed my thoughts. I have said that Paul can leave the club this summer, it is difficult to make big deals in January, he said according to
Mino Raiola: “Pogba will have a great future. In England, they're very sensitive when you talk about Pogba... I’ve just expressed my thoughts. I’ve said that Paul can leave in the summer, it’s hard to do top deals in January”. 🔴 #MUFC— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) December 14, 2020
Solskjær is nevertheless said to have reacted strongly to the agent.
– It is reported that Solskjær is furious at how Raiola has handled the situation, and that the “Red Devils” will work to sell Pogba already next month (January) if an opportunity opens up for it, wrote the British tabloid newspaper Mirror.
However, Pogba still has a contract with Manchester United until next season, and has shown good pace despite a longer injury absence.
Top 10 grills
Get the latest news delivered to your inbox
Follow us on social media networks