"Fancy taking a C-19 pay-cut Pogba? We need find 120m for our next new fancy play-thing."
Honestly though, one look at who's in charge in the dug-out and I'm at a total loss why any top player would seriously entertain the idea of going there.... The hobbit's not gonna take Sancho's game to the next level. If he goes there he's a mug.
THE CAPTAIN AS ROLE MODEL
I’ve had a lot of stuff in the press since I was16,alotofitcrap.Buthalfofitismy own fault and that’s where you need to grow up as a person. I’d been through that so when I became England captain the level of attention was no big change for me. But it might have been a bigger change for someone like Harry Kane.
You need to be a strong character. The England armband means your behaviour is judged differently. After my last com- petitive international, v Scotland in 2016, there were headlines about me having a drink in The Grove Hotel yet the truth was it was a Saturday, we’d played on Fri- day and it was already decided I wouldn’t be involved — not even on the bench — in a match on Tuesday versus Spain.
I could have gone home. Gareth and I agreed, though, that as captain it would be good if I stayed around the camp and attended the game.
As happened during my whole England career when there was a break, players were given the evening off and permission to let their hair down, even have a drink. Some players headed into London but I knew it would get more attention if I accompanied them, so I stayed in the hotel along with a few others, including staff, and had a drink.
On reflection I could have made a dif- ferent decision but what followed was way over the top. In the aftermath, the FA was too scared of the reaction to defend me and so the coverage went overboard. I had to be strong and deal with the situa- tion. I’ve dealt with it my whole career.
MY BEST CAPTAINS
Captains set the example through performances. They don’t have to be the best player, but they have to be consist- ent. They can’t show weakness. They have to always show belief. If you go a goal down you have to keep encouraging, demonstrating your calmness to every- one.
The best captains I played for had dif- ferent personalities but shared those traits. David Beckham was quiet, but it was an iconic time when he was captain of England because of his status in the game. He led through his attitude and work rate. Stevie Gerrard brought drive and determination. He wasn’t the most vocal, but you knew by one of his tackles what he was saying. John Terry was very good too; Duncan Ferguson was really quiet off the pitch but
on it was all heart and fight.
Now Roy Keane was vocal. He had an
aura. I remember my first United training session thinking, “I need to impress him.” Not the manager. Him.
I was at United when he gave his infa- mous MUTV interview but disagree with how it’s portrayed. Roy was supposedly too critical of his team-mates but I’ve watched the video and there’s nothing wrong with it at all. He said that players can’t pass the ball ten yards and they’re playing for Manchester United and it’s not good enough. Well, he’s right.
Going to be funny in the summer when Man U fans find out Fernandes is the Pogba replacement with them being so excited at them being in the team together. It seems everyone has forgotten how Pogba has been trying to get himself out of Manchester for the last 2 years!