Nemanja Matic: Paul Pogba Is Very Important For Manchester United

Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba has been grabbing the headlines and answering his critics in two games out of Jose Mourinho‘s shadow. Teammate Nemanja Matic has insisted that Pogba who has been one of the outstanding performers in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s 100 per cent start as interim manager – scoring twice in the 3-1 Boxing Day win against Huddersfield – still has much higher levels to reach.Matic noted that “I’ve said previously when they asked me about him, he’s very important for us,” said the Serbian. “When he plays at his best, he can make the difference in every game. He played very well (against Huddersfield), but I think that he can do even more. Slowly, game-by-game. It was very important for him to score some goals. The confidence for the next one is going to be bigger and he needs to know that he still can improve. He needs to know that he’s very important for this team. I hope that he will continue like this.” Pogba and Matic were seen as an ideal midfield combination when Mourinho paired them together at United, but the Portuguese struggled to the balance right in his engine room. Pogba priced the fall guy, with the 25-year-old repeatedly dropped from the second half of last season. Matic added: “We had great games. Last season, we know that we finished second; it’s not perfect, but we had good games. I know that he can play well. It doesn’t matter if it’s with me, Ander (Herrera), Fred in the middle, or (Marouane) Fellaini. I think that if we give our best, everyone on the pitch, then his quality of my quality, or Marcus Rashford’s, Jesse Lingard’s quality can make the difference. But if we are not giving everything that we can, then one player cannot change anything.”Meanwhile Matic claims Solskjaer’s playing record at United will count for little if he can’t maintain his outstanding start as manager. “Of course he’s a legend in this club,” he added. “He did a lot, he scored many goals for this club and of course they will never forget him. But now it’s a new page for him. As a manager, he needs to show again because in football every day is a new challenge. But I am sure that he will do again great things. He is a great person, a good manager from what we saw in this few days and I wish him all the best. I think that he deserves all good things. Six points from two games I think is perfect. It’s difficult to answer what we changed. But, for sure, our approach to the (Huddersfield) game was different because this team have quality and we have to give our best every game if we want to win the games. I remember when I played against Man United, we had always extra motivation to play against big clubs. Today is the same. Everyone wants to show against Man United that they can compete with us, so we need to know that our level of running and fighting needs to be the same or even higher than the other team. Then our quality can make the difference.”Photo Credit: Getty

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