BIG INTERVIEW Paul Pogba is not to blame for Solskjaer's woes, says former Man United striker
Former Manchester United striker Louis Saha believes the criticism that flows in Paul Pogba's direction is misplaced, as he told sundayworld.com that the French World Cup winner should be eager to silence his critics as he returns to Premier League action.
Pogba has struggled to make his mark as United have struggled in their opening three league games, with his limp performance in an embarrassing 6-1 home defeat against Tottenham in their last match seen him come under fire from observers once again.
Now Saha, who won two Premier League titles during his days at United, has backed Pogba to bounce back and lead from the front ahead of crucial games against Newcastle on Saturday and Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League next Tuesday.
"For me, he is a top, top player and one of the players we can say is world class in this United squad, but he is always the first one to get criticism if the team plays badly," he told sundayworld.com at a BT Sport event.
"He is the most expensive players, the expectations around him are so high and when the team doesn't play well, he is the first target. The defence was horrific against Tottenham, but people still ask questions about Pogba. How can he be blamed for the mistakes we saw in that game?
"People demand a lot from him and for me, I don't think he has been hiding. He may lose the ball, not have the right tempo, but I don't think he is hiding. I see some players in that team who put themselves into a position where they will not get the ball and this is hiding. Sometimes you can have bad games, but that is not allowed when you are Paul Pogba.
"Energy wise, you could see he was a bit down against Tottenham, but it looked to me like a player who had heavy legs at the start of the season.
"When I saw him playing for France the other night, he looks to to be getting back to a higher level and maybe United will see that from him now. Straight away, he looked to have more strength and energy when he played for France."
Read the full interview with Louis Saha as he discuses the future of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and what happens next at Manchester United on sundayworld.com this weekend.
Everton v Liverpool is live on BT Sport on Saturday, with the game available to Sky customers with a Sports Extra account.