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The rise of Pogba, from Manchester United's bench to Juventus: treasure for sale or world heritage?
The French wonderboy's value boosted in the last two seasons. The midfielder has been linked to PSG and Real Madrid in the last week. But his marriage with Juventus could continue: it would be worthwhile for both
by Alessio Manes
There are only 11 matches left until the end of this year’s Italian Serie A, but it seems like reading about football news lying on the beach during the summer transfer window. In this last week, Real Madrid and PSG have reportedly requested to meet Italian champions Juventus to discuss a possible move for French international Paul Pogba.

The former Manchester United wonderboy is widely regarded as one of the best midfield talents in European football, with a number of clubs interested in him. However, according to El Confidencial, Madrid have asked for permission to meet officials from Juve after the friendly match between Spain and Italy on the 5th of March, to discuss the powerful midfielder, who is expected to star for France in the World Cup this summer. Let’s go through Paul Pogba’s latest years in Juve in order to see how he became one of the best and most wanted young talents in European football.

After reaching Antonio Conte’s kingdom in July 2012 for a small transfer fee amount of approximately 200.000 €, “le pétit prince” is now worth like a Liberty Gustav Klimt painting of the 1900s. His 18 months spent with the Old Lady are just impressive: he played a total of 52 games, scoring 18 goals gaining game after game the coach’s confidence.

The number 6 is a classic defensive midfielder that has the strength of a climbing rock and the elegance of a young olympic ballerina. Taking into account relevant stats of this year’s Serie A, Paul Pogba manage to appear in 26 matches scoring 5 goals and creating a number of 39 total clear chances. Just like a normal striker. However, his defensive stats are even more impressive managing to reach 91% of pass accuracy and winning 50% of duels opponents.

Recently, Juve’s President Andrea Agnelli considered Pogba as an UNESCO world heritage claiming that the French international will be playing for Juve for the next future years as well. But will Juve withstand to any rich offer from top European clubs? Will they be able to keep this treasure firm?

A gain of 60€ millions will probably help the team build a stronger squad in order to compete for future championships, however is this really the right move? The answer must be discussed among Juve’s side and the player’s side as well. From the team’s point of view this choice doesn't seem to take Juve to the next level and will probably be very tricky too. Finding someone on the market that is at least substantial and cheap as Pogba might be difficult.

On the other side, a 20 year-old player that moves from a “known-safe place” to a new undiscovered one, can be a real challenge. The positive feature might be earning eight times more in terms of annual salary but the downside will be starting a new career in a new club with the uncertainty of failing. That is the both of them are linked to each other. So probably the marriage should last much longer. Sometimes it’s just a matter of having a precious painting on the wall of your room and the good news is that as long as it’s a Gustav Klimt canvas, everyone will line up to come along and see it shine.

Sunday, March 16 th, 2014
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