Wayne Rooney has revealed why Paul Pogba struggled under Jose Mourinho, saying the Frenchman needs to be left to play his own game in order to get the best out of him.
Pogba and Mourinho clashed at times this season, with the France international told he’ll never captain the club again one stage, while there was also a heated debate on the training pitch after a Carabao Cup loss to Derby.
In the final few games under Mourinho, Pogba was left out of the starting XI for Premier League matches, and did not play at all in the manager’s final game – a 3-1 defeat to rivals Liverpool.
Interim manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer brought the 25-year-old straight back into his XI, with Pogba having responded by scoring four goals and adding four assists in the six games since the managerial change.
And former United star Rooney believes that Pogba needs to be allowed to play with freedom to get the best out of him.
“Well I think with Paul, I watched him come through the academy at United and he’s got a lot of ability, but the difficult time he was going through… if you don’t have a good relationship with the coach, then it’s difficult to be at your top if you feel like the coach is scrutinising every decision you make, every pass you make,” Rooney told ESPN.
“Paul Pogba will give the ball away, he’ll try passes [and] it won’t be the right pass at times, but you have to let him do that because two or three of them passes will create goals, will create opportunities.
“I think he found it difficult under Mourinho. I think a player and a manager with big egos clashed and the outcome was never going to be great.”