It may have taken a few months to seal, and it may have cost the sanity of more than a few reds, but at long last, Manchester United have their man. In the early hours of Tuesday, United finally announced that they have completed a deal to take Paul Pogba back to Old Trafford four years after the player left for Juventus. United have spared little expense, rolling out dramatic videos of Pogba in a hooded sweatshirt before looking straight into the camera and saying two words; “I’m back.”
Manutd.com predictably carry the first quotes, with Pogba stating his happiness at sealing a return back to Manchester:
“I am delighted to rejoin United. It has always been a club with a special place in my heart and I am really looking forward to working with José Mourinho. I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Juventus and have some fantastic memories of a great club with players that I count as friends. But I feel the time is right to go back to Old Trafford. I always enjoyed playing in front of the fans and can’t wait to make my contribution to the team. This is the right club for me to achieve everything I hope to in the game.”
United manager Jose Mourinho is equally enthused:
“Paul is one of the best players in the world and will be a key part of the United team I want to build here for the future. He is quick, strong, scores goals and reads the game better than many players much older than he is. At 23, he has the chance to make that position his own here over many years. He is young and will continue to improve; he has the chance to be at the heart of this club for the next decade and beyond.”
It’s an exciting end to a transfer deal that had threatened to descend into farce, given the length of time that it’s taken to get the deal over the line. Pogba himself took to Instagram to say his goodbyes to his former club and stated: “This transfer was a huge decision and required lots of thinking.” That might help to explain why this transfer has been so protracted, but the sheer joy of seeing Pogba back in red surely makes it worthwhile, and with the Premier League season 4 days away, attention can seemingly finally and completely turn to the beginning of United’s pursuit of the league title.