Man Utd star Bruno Fernandes explains Paul Pogba feelings on being a substitute

Manchester United star Bruno Fernandes has insisted Paul Pogba has no issue with being benched for recent matches. The France international recently started against RB Leipzig but, prior to that, had been among the substitutes for fixtures against Newcastle, PSG and Chelsea. But his team-mate has insisted he’s at ease with his current situation.

Manchester United have seen Pogba struggle since the start of the new season, with the France international particularly bad in defeats to Crystal Palace and Tottenham at Old Trafford.

However, in recent times, there’s been signs of the 27-year-old starting to rediscover his mojo.

Pogba made impressive substitute cameos against PSG and Newcastle, helping the Red Devils win both matches.

And he was solid in the 5-0 win over RB Leipzig on Wednesday night before making way in the second half.

Now, Fernandes has insisted his team-mate is content with his current role at Old Trafford – and also opened up on their relationship.

“Paul wants to play, he wants to be in the first XI, that is no different to any player – they all want to be in the first XI,” Fernandes told Sky Sports.

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“Of course Paul is an amazing player who has done a lot of great things in the past few years. The way he came in against Paris Saint-Germain, against Newcastle, was perfect for the team.

“A lot of people may think Paul is angry on the bench and that he will do nothing when he comes on because he is angry, but he comes in with the right motivation, as we saw with his assist in Paris.

“He was there, he was fighting, holding the ball in the corner for us, he did a really good job.

“Maybe some people think he was angry because he wanted to play and that he wants to leave the club. Everyone knows the qualities Paul has, he is doing very well.

“Being on the bench is a problem for everyone, but this problem is motivation for Paul.

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“He uses this as motivation and he is helping the team a lot when he comes in and plays, like he did in the last game in the Champions League.”

On his relationship with Pogba, Fernandes said: “We have a good relationship, of course.

“We both speak Italian so most of the time we speak Italian. I have a good relationship with him on and off the pitch.

“He’s a funny guy, he always wants to joke. I know him from Italy already but now I have the chance to be in a team with a World Cup winner.

“It’s always a pleasure being in a team with him because I can learn a lot from him, and he can learn a lot from me. Together we can do great things.”

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Meanwhile, ESPN pundit Steve Nicol has warned United about picking Pogba for their upcoming clash with Arsenal on Sunday night (4.30pm).

Nicol told ESPN FC: “I’ve got to tell you that as soon as I look at this fixture and as soon as I think about it, as soon as I think of Man United, I think ‘Pogba’s not going to play again’.

“So your highest-paid player, your most sought-after player, the face of the club, isn’t going to kick a ball, because if he does then the result might go against them.

“Ole’s been going on all week about how great he was against Leipzig and how he’s getting fitter and waxing lyrical about him.

“But he’s not going to play and he shouldn’t play, because when he plays they’re just not the same.”

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