Paul Pogba to Manchester United. Easily the biggest transfer of the summer, whilst simultaneously being the longest, most drawn-out saga of the off-season.
Since the rumours of the mega deal became genuine reports, and a deal with Juventus looked to possible, concrete information has been at a premium. Press worldwide have been desperate to grab a piece of the Pogba action by reporting on every single minute detail of his comings and goings, from his Instagram posts to his choice of colourful attire.
With just under two weeks to go before the Premier League season starts, the wait for confirmation of this record breaking deal continues. Sky Sports reported yesterday that Pogba was preparing for his return to Manchester United, another tantalising update that fails to give any sort of timescale for when the deal will finally be announced. The Guardian’s Fabrizio Romano had suggest that the deal would be closed ‘within 48 hours’, which again seems somewhat hasty in retrospect.
There’s plenty for United fans to get excited about; Pogba is one of the best midfielders on the planet, a marketable and incredibly popular figure in football worldwide. He would instantly expect to command a regular starting spot in Jose Mourinho’s strongest XI, and will surely relish the challenge of a return to England to prove his credentials, having left so acrimoniously in 2012 during Sir Alex Ferguson’s time in charge.
So, when will it all end? Presumably, when Pogba’s American holiday ends. The Frenchman has taken in Miami, Los Angeles and Las Vegas over the last few weeks since France’s disappointing loss to Portugal in the final of Euro 2016, and given UEFA’s stipulation that players must take a 3-week break after the conclusion of an international tournament, it’s understandable that Pogba and Raiola might not be in a rush to complete the deal. Given the money being discussed, and United’s preference for unveiling every new signing at Carrington with pictures and an exclusive MUTV interview, it’s no surprise that this particular transfer might be taking some time to seal.
Still, with a new season on the horizon, and Pogba’s signature seemingly imminent on a new United contract, there’s still plenty for fans of the club to be excited about, as long as they remain patient.