• Wednesday, Jun 03, 2020
  • Last Update : 11:57 pm

Pogba: I don't need the armband to be a leader

  • Published at 10:28 am October 10th, 2018
pogba

Pogba made his France debut in 2013, and has racked up 62 caps while appearing at three major tournaments

France and Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba has told AFP in an interview that his international teammates give him the freedom to express himself and be the team's leader.

Pogba has faced criticism for failing to repeat his impressive performances at the World Cup for United, who have slumped early in the season.

The subject of Pogba's reportedly fraught relationship with United boss Jose Mourinho was strictly off the table for the interview at France's international training base.

United's difficult start in the Premier League all seems a long away from France's glory in Russia, but reunited again with his France teammates, Pogba was happy to recall that defender Adil Rami had described him as the team's "real leader" at the World Cup.

"It really pleased me to hear Adil say that," Pogba told AFP. "I would never say it's me, it's the squad who put me in that position, who gave me the freedom to express myself. They gave me confidence as well.

"I couldn't have done it without them. It all began like that, from our training camp. I spoke with Hugo (Lloris), Blaise (Matuidi), (Raphael) Varane, to say that this World Cup we really had to put everything in place to win it. I was really determined."

Pogba made his France debut in 2013, and has racked up 62 caps while appearing at three major tournaments.

"With my age, 25 years old, I'm between the two sets of players, the oldest and the youngest. That allows me to relay messages and have the chance to be heard," he said.

"I could say what I felt, give messages and pass them on from the older players to the younger ones. I was the go-between you could say."

France face Iceland in a friendly in Guingamp on Thursday and resume their Nations League campaign with a return clash at home to Germany on October 16, following a 0-0 draw in Munich last month.

Despite taking on a key leadership role at the World Cup, a growing rift between Pogba and Mourinho saw the France international stripped of the United vice-captaincy last month. 

He said the France captaincy was not one of his main goals.

"I've never played in the France team to be captain, being here is already a big thing for me," he said.

"You don't have to be captain in order to speak, a leader is not someone who has the armband. As a leader you can talk on the pitch but I've seen leaders who didn't necessarily talk."

He cited former Italy midfielder Andrea Pirlo, a teammate of Pogba's at Juventus, as someone who could be relied upon to "show you the way on the pitch". 

Pogba was one of six players in Didier Deschamps' squad to be nominated for the Ballon d'Or on Monday, and he believes the prize should go to one of his France teammates.

"It's all I hope for whatever happens, because there are a lot of them who deserve it," he said.

"I'm not going to get into it, whether it's (Antoine) Griezmann, Kylian (Mbappe) or Raphael who deserve it much more than me. 

"I can't pick one of them, but I sincerely hope it'll be one of those three, or even four because there's also NG (N'Golo Kante)."


52
51
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail