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'We can't get Roy Keane, Giggs, Cantona in one player' - Solskjaer plays down Pogba expectations

The Man United manager believes fans are asking too much from their French midfielder.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says he expects the fans to get behind Pogba.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says he expects the fans to get behind Pogba.
Image: Martin Rickett

MANCHESTER UNITED MANAGER Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has played down expectations around Paul Pogba, saying the midfielder could not be Roy Keane, Juan Sebastian Veron, Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs and Eric Cantona combined.

Pogba remains at Old Trafford despite being linked with a move away throughout the close season, but the 26-year-old was criticised after missing a penalty during a draw at Wolves on Monday.

Solskjaer has praised the France midfielder’s all-round abilities, but warned United could be asking for too much from Pogba. 

“We can all see Paul was disappointed when he missed a penalty. He doesn’t deserve this,” Solskjaer told reporters on Friday. 

“He is, as I’ve said so many times, and he’s said it himself, when you sign for Man United, you become a Manc and, once a Manc is always a Manc, and he gives his absolute everything for the club every week. 

He expects a lot from himself as well, so it doesn’t frustrate me. We expect a lot from him, but we know we can’t get Roy Keane, Veron, Scholes, Giggs, Cantona in one player. It’s hard, but he’s a top, top player. 

“I know people expect him to do absolutely everything on a football pitch, but he’s got so many qualities that we’re seeing different qualities from Paul this year compared to last season, and he’s a leader in the group. So, I expect the fans to be behind him, yes.” 

Pogba was criticised for taking the penalty against Wolves just a week after Marcus Rashford had converted a spot-kick in a resounding victory over Chelsea. 

But Solskjaer, whose side host Crystal Palace on Saturday, confirmed that the duo were still on penalty duties for United. 

“I’m sure you’re going to see Paul Pogba score a pen for United again,” he said.

“We’re practising pens still and Marcus and Paul are still on them.”

After his penalty miss, Pogba was subject to racial abuse on social media with his Red Devils team-mates quick to rally around him.

“Manchester United is a family. Paul Pogba is a huge part of that family,” Rashford wrote on Twitter.

“You attack him you attack us all.”

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