Paul Pogba and Luke Shaw have cost Man Utd £40million by missing games while fit

Manchester United megastars may have had their fare share of serious injuries since the start of the 2015/16 season – but a more damning statistic is the amount of fixtures they've missed while out of favour and form.

The Red Devils have slipped out of Premier League title contention yet again under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer despite having the most expensive wage bill in the division.

While it can be easy to put some of their poor results down to injuries, the numbers have been crunched to show just how much the club have been paying benched players since Louis van Gaal's time in charge.

The study, completed by BettingOdds.com, has separated stats from those who have been injured with those who have slipped out of the starting XI despite being fit to feature.

Luke Shaw – £20,690,000

United have paid Luke Shaw an astounding £20million during the time he has been out of favour at Old Trafford following his 2014 move from Southampton.

The England defender has been unselected on 167 occasions since the start of the 2015/16 campaign despite being fit to play, most notably out of favour under Jose Mourinho.

Although the 26-year-old has missed 89 games while injured, which is out of his control, the amount of time he has been sat on the bench since 2015 is unrivalled at the club.

More positively, Shaw has been a regular in the side in recent campaigns, and proved to be a star player for his country in their run to the final of Euro 2020, a game in which he scored.

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Paul Pogba – £19,720,000

Having recently suffered another serious injury, Paul Pogba looks set to be out of action until 2022, but there have been plenty of occasions in which he has been fit and out of favour since his return to United.

The World Cup winner with France has been paid over £19million while out of form since his 2016 switch from Juventus, getting overlooked for 68 games while fit to play.

That is a far larger number than the 40 fixtures he has missed while injured, but that number will grow following the thigh issue he suffered on international duty, with his contract due to expire in the summer.

Juan Mata – £16,640,000

Third on the list is Juan Mata, who has played an increasingly reduced role at Old Trafford since the 54 appearances he made in all competitions back in 2015/16.

The 33-year-old made only nine league appearances last season and is yet to play in the Premier League this term, costing United more than £16million while sitting on the bench but being fit to play.

Mata could well be on his way out of the club this summer with his contract due to expire and his 34th birthday coming before the end of the campaign.

Making up the top ten of wages being paid out to players who were out of favour between 2015/16 and now are Sergio Romero (£15m), Marcos Rojo (£13m), Phil Jones (£12m), Anthony Martial (£10), Eric Bailly (£9m), Ashley Young (£8m) and Wayne Rooney (£8m).

Romero will not come as a surprise to many considering his long spell as back-up behind David de Gea, with Rojo and Jones also regularly warming the bench.

Martial and Bailly have not been able to hit their potential on a consistent basis, with Young becoming a key player at United during his final two full seasons at the club.

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