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José Mourinho: Manchester United can help Paul Pogba become best in world

France's Paul Pogba

José Mourinho has welcomed the imminent signing of Paul Pogba for a world record fee of €110m (£93.2m) after guiding Manchester United to victory over Leicester in the Community Shield.

United confirmed on Sunday that they have reached an agreement with Juventus over the transfer of Pogba following weeks of protracted negotiations, with the France midfielder given permission to have a medical at Carrington on Tuesday before returning to Old Trafford.

The 23-year-old will travel to Manchester on Monday to sign a five-year contract with the club he left in 2012 on a free transfer. The fee is likely to be €105m up front with €5m add-ons factored in and United have also agreed to pay the substantial cut commanded by Pogba’s agent, Mino Raiola, who acted as an intermediary between the clubs during discussions. That is understood to be around 20% of the initial fee .

“He’s our player assuming everything goes well in the medical, I will be there waiting for him on Tuesday,” said Mourinho after Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s header sealed a 2-1 triumph for the FA Cup winners over Claudio Ranieri’s champions.

“We have signed one defender, one striker, one midfielder and a creative this summer so it has been a good market for us. I honestly don’t know the exact amount of money we have paid for Pogba, though if it is a new world record I don’t think we need to be sad about that. Real Madrid were not sad when they set a new record for Gareth Bale, they were proud.

“It is a lot of money of course but football is a crazy industry, and very often what seems expensive now does not seem so bad in three years or so. I know we are getting a very good player and I think United is the perfect club to bring him to the level he wants to be at.

“We want to bring Manchester United to the top again and if you want to be the best player in the world this is the club to join. We have everything to offer him and he is coming because he knows the club and the city and he wants to be a part of the Manchester United project.”

Juventus officials briefed that they had given permission for Pogba to complete his medical during their 3-2 friendly win over West Ham at the Olympic Stadium on Sunday afternoon before United released a statement of their own.

“Paul Pogba has been granted permission to have a medical in order to finalise his transfer from Juventus to Manchester United,” it read.

Pogba is expected to earn a basic salary of about £11m a year plus incentives at Old Trafford, and retain sponsorship and image rights.

He will become United’s fourth signing since José Mourinho took over as manager, following the acquisitions of the defender Eric Bailly, striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic and attacking midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan. The latter pair are also represented by Raiola.

Mourinho had targeted four areas to strengthen his squad and is unlikely to do much more notable business in this window, unless an unexpected opportunity arises.

The Juve manager, Massimiliano Allegri, had said last week he summoned Pogba to train with the club on Monday but there was a breakthrough in discussions since. Gonzalo Higuaín came off the bench to make his Juve debut against West Ham, but the Italian club have insisted all along that their €90m signing of the Argentina striker was not reliant upon them selling Pogba.

Pogba has won four Serie A titles and the Coppa Italia twice in Turin but was on the losing end in the 2015 Champions League final and also failed to leave an impact for France in last month’s Euro 2016 final defeat to Portugal.

He would be eligible to start in United’s Premier League opener against Bournemouth next Sunday, though that would appear unlikely on account of him having a prolonged summer break following the Euros, though Allegri said last week that the midfielder “has been training in Vinovo”.

Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article was written by Alan Smith and Fabrizio Romano, for The Guardian on Sunday 7th August 2016 13.09 Europe/London

guardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010

 

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