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'Paul Pogba Isn't World Class In Any Shape Or Form'

'Paul Pogba Isn't World Class In Any Shape Or Form'

Paul Pogba is a "very" talented player but doesn't work hard enough, according to former Manchester United first-team coach Rene Meulensteen, who has played down those who label him "world class".

The French midfielder was widely criticised after a lacklustre performance against Arsenal at the weekend, where he gave away a penalty after a foul on Hector Bellerin.

His below-par efforts against Mikel Arteta's side came just days after Pogba gave the world glimpses of his talent against RB Leipzig in the Champions League but ultimately, his consistency in the middle of the park continues to raise question marks.

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Roy Keane questioned Pogba's "spirit and fight" ahead of Sunday's clash at Old Trafford and now, former United coach Meulensteen has given his damning assessment of the midfielder's troubles at the club.

"You can have all the talent in the world but it's about hard work, and it's hard work that brings that quality to the surface." Meulensteen told Stadium Astro.

"For me, he hasn't worked hard enough. I can see it all the time, it's too slow, it's laboured and there is no urgency about it and other teams can capitalise on it.

"He is a very talented player. Everyone keeps talking about him - he's world class, he's world class.

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"I would never use world class so easily because I know players past and present and they deserve the accolade of being world class. In my opinion, Paul doesn't deserve that in any shape or form because I don't think he's lived up to expectations.

"I don't think we expect too much of him because of the player he has been and the trophies he has won.

"We need to expect even more from him, but that only comes from working hard. That then rubs off on other players. Not working hard does as well because they start to question those performances."

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Meulensteen went on to question Pogba's overall leadership sklls.

"He played in a very experienced, well set up team [at Juventus], with a lot of strong personalities and leaders," Meulensteen continued.

"That's one thing United are lacking, leadership. He should be one of them but he isn't, he isn't a natural leader.

"You need to get him back where he can do most of the damage, which is between the lines and in the pockets. At the moment he is too often in areas where he gets crowded out.

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"One area where he has been poor is that he gets the ball nicked off him too often.

"It's a constant puzzle. You need to win games, United have had their worst start in the Premier League at home, and I don't think Ole knows what his best 11 is."

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Thoughts on Pogba's performances in a United shirt since joining the club for a second spell?

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Let us know in the comments.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Paul Pogba, Football News, Football, Manchester United, Premier League

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Jack Kenmare

Jack Kenmare is a writer at SPORTbible. He's interviewed some of the biggest names in sport, including Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Pele, Carles Puyol and Tim Henman. He dabbles in all things sport but football is his biggest passion. He was once hit in the head by a wayward strike from Nicky Butt and lived to tell the tale.