Jose Mourinho indicated he has no time for an ugly war of words with Paul Pogba after the French midfielder ripped into the former Manchester United manager’s methods.
In an explosive interview shared on Friday, Pogba discussed working under Mourinho and how the Portuguese boss measures up compared to current Man Utd manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
“What I have now with Ole is different, he wouldn’t go against the players,” Pogba told Sky Sports.
“[Solskjaer] wouldn’t go against the players. Maybe Ole wouldn’t pick them, but it’s not like he puts them on the side like they don’t exist anymore. That’s the difference between Mourinho and Ole.”
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The comments reignited a feud stemming from the frosty final months of Mourinho’s tenure at Old Trafford, when he fell out with Pogba and stripped him of the vice-captaincy.
After Mourinho departed, Pogba was widely seen as rejoicing at the decision.
But speaking after Tottenham’s 2-2 draw with Everton on Friday night, the Spurs boss refused to be baited into responded to Pogba’s putdown.
“I couldn’t care less with what he says, not interested at all,” replied Mourinho curtly when asked about the comments, before walking off.
🗣”I would like to say I couldn’t care less with what he says.”
Jose Mourinho reacts to Paul Pogba’s comments on him as a manager at Manchester United pic.twitter.com/W1WjthkveA
— Football Daily (@footballdaily) April 16, 2021
Pogba rejoined United from Juventus in a then-world record deal in 2016, with Mourinho having been named manager three months previously. Their relationship got off to a good start when they helped the club to a cup double in 2017, claiming the League Cup and Europa League titles.
Mourinho then guided United to a second-place Premier League finish in 2018 before things unraveled spectacularly during the first months of his third campaign at the helm.
Tensions with players – including the big-name Pogba – were held up as a factor in the increasing mood of doom engulfing the club.
“Once I had a great relationship with Mourinho, everybody saw that, and the next day you don’t know what happened,” Pogba, 28, said in his interview with Sky Sports, while heaping praise on Solskjaer, the man who replaced Mourinho in the dugout.
“That’s the strange thing I had with Mourinho and I cannot explain to you because even I don’t know.
“Maybe [Solskjaer’s methods work] because he is a bit closer to the people. Every coach has their own way to coach and deal with players, and as a player you have to adapt. Sometimes it doesn’t suit you and sometimes it does.”
After leaving the club, Mourinho took a swipe at Pogba in an interview in April of 2019, referring to him as ‘His Excellency’ as he told a story of how Pogba had supposedly wanted to travel home from a game in a chauffeur-driven Rolls-Royce, rather than take the team bus.
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The pair came face to face last again weekend when Tottenham met United in the Premier League, with the French World Cup winner earning bragging rights with a 3-1 victory which cemented the Manchester club’s hold on second place in the table.
After their draw with Everton on Friday night – in which England hitman Harry Kane struck twice before hobbling off the pitch late on – Spurs’ chances of Champions League football seem all but dead.
They do, however, have a League Cup final to look forward to against Manchester City at the end of April.
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