Following his appointment as interim head coach at Manchester United, aside from producing positive results on the pitch, one of the priorities facing Ralf Rangnick is to reshape transfer policy at the club. Top of the agenda will be the future of two notable French internationals, given the level of uncertainty which currently surrounds Anthony Martial and Paul Pogba, although it appears the German is already clear about his own thoughts.
No immediate pressure on Paul Pogba to stay
“If a player doesn’t want to play for a club like Manchester United, even in the long term, I don’t think it makes sense to convince him to change his mind.” This was the response of Rangnick to questions about the future of Pogba, highlighted at BBC Sport when asked if he will be encouraging the 28-year-old to stay at Old Trafford, amidst what appears to be a lack of progress regarding his contract renewal negotiations.
“I would not say he is is not worth keeping, but players need to want to stay and play for the club,” underlined Rangnick in no uncertain terms. “Let’s have him come back, get fully fit and training with the team, then we will see where we stand,” he concluded. At the start of November, Pogba sustained a thigh injury whilst on international duty with France. Since then, the midfielder has been undergoing rehabilitation at the Nad Al Sheba Sports complex, located in Dubai.
Rangnick has only spoken briefly with Pogba via telephone, principally to make introductions and gauge how the injury recovery is progressing. The new United boss believes Pogba could be another several weeks from returning to action, while his own stance regarding contract renewal negotiations has been made abundantly clear. The club appears to have done everything possible, including the offer of a significant wage increase. It’s now up to Pogba and of course, his influential agent Mino Raiola, whether he stays or goes.
Anthony Martial appears to have lost patience
“Anthony wishes to leave the club in January. He just needs to play. He doesn’t want to stay in January and I will speak to the club soon.” These were the words of Philippe Lamboley, the executive director of USFA Management and representative of Anthony Martial, speaking to Sky Sports News. Hardly surprising, especially when given how little the 26-year-old forward has featured this term, having fallen further down the selection pecking order.
During the 2021-22 campaign to date, Martial has played the whole ninety minutes in just one game, when Manchester United were eliminated from the EFL Cup by West Ham United. Otherwise, the majority of his appearances throughout the season to date have been fleeting, including just two minutes as a substitute in his most recent outing against Arsenal.
Although he still has three years remaining on his current contract, following this recent statement from his representative, Martial evidently seems resigned to having no future at Manchester United. Eager to get regular match action, there is now a greater sense of urgency to seek a move elsewhere. Rangnick has promised to evaluate the circumstances of each player individually, but given his already stated stance, probably won’t stand in the way of Martial if is desire is now to leave Manchester United.
Where next for Anthony Martial and Paul Pogba?
The choice of potential destinations for either player is wide open at the moment, while many of the leading online betting companies are even offering odds, based around current speculation surrounding the futures of Anthony Martial and Paul Pogba at Manchester United. While it is more common to bet on the result of an individual match outcome, there are so many more betting options available these days, such as future player transfers.
For participants in the Middle East and North Africa, the best possible sporting odds and exciting bonus offers have been reviewed by Arabian Betting, covering a broad variety of markets and options including January transfer window betting odds. At most leading online sportsbooks, PSG are tipped as clear favourites to make a swift move for Martial in January. Barcelona had apparently made enquiries but baulked at the €30 million valuation, although that would be affordable for interested parties like Newcastle United.