It appears today Sir Alex Feguson has lost the battle to keep another of Manchester United’s young talents Paul Pogba after the departure of Ravel Morrison to West Ham in the January transfer window. Ferguson had appealed to Pogba to put his career before money but it seems that the lure of £830,000 a season at Juventus has been too hard to resist.
It is now apparent that within 3 months United have lost both of their Youth Cup-winning midfield. However the deal isn’t all as it seems as the deal worth a reported £20,000 a week would see his agent Mino Raiola pocket a cool £1.7million. Raiola also represents Manchester City’s Mario Balotelli and is cited by United as the main stalling point of negotiations with the France U19’s midefielder.
Last week Raiola was cited in the Independent as saying that it was “a precarious situation” and that it was “difficult at the moment… It is up to the boy to make some decisions.” It is clear to see that Raiola was always pulling the strings in any deal that was to be struck with United.
Pogba had struggled to break into the United first team whilst other academy players such as Danny Wellbeck and Tom Clevereley had been promoted to the first team whilst Chris Smalling and Phil Jones were also added. The reported wage demands in the region of £45,000 a week therefore seem unjustified for a player who only made his Premier League debut in January and has failed to impress the Old Trafford outfit since.
Manchester United’s youth policy has since been questioned in light of the circumstances. Ravel Morrison left under conspicuous circumstance in January to Join West Ham on a three and a half year deal. It is claimed by sources in Old Trafford that the players’ behaviour and attitude were the main reasons for his departure.
Morrison has recently been in the spotlight again, being fined for a homophobic slur on twitter. It has to be seen that Sir Alex seems to have made the right decision to let both players leave the club. The type of behaviour that is accepted by ‘noisy neighbours’ Manchester City with players such as Carlos Tevez and Mario Balotelli isn’t one which is tolerated in the United camp. Before United’s Europa League tie with Ajax Pogba was reportedly dropped from squad and forced to train with the reserves after a dispute with management. Sir Alex takes a hard stance on players who step out of line, an approach which Roberto Mancini has failed to appreciate and has seen the likes of Tevez appear to have gained the upper hand. Ferguson has always been an advocate in the philosophy that no player is bigger than the club and it seems like decisions not to sign Tevez in 2009 and to let Morrison leave early in January seem to have been justified.