Juventus plan to open talks with Manchester United this January in order to bring Paul Pogba back to Italy.
Pogba made his professional debut for United but moved to Juventus when Alex Ferguson appeared reluctant to give him a new deal on Mino Raiola’s desired terms, and moved to the perennial Italian champions.
After impressing in Turin, he was brought back to Old Trafford by Ed Woodward for Jose Mourinho, and the French World Cup winner won the Europa League and the League Cup under the Portuguese manager. However, his form soon fell off and he has been linked with a move to Real Madrid for the last two seasons.
No serious bid has ever been lodged for him, though Barcelona offered Yerry Mina, Andre Gomes and £50 million for him at the end of last season’s summer transfer window. That was rejected by Ed Woodward, who is keen to retain his marketing asset.
Current boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is understood to be happy to keep Pogba, but is also willing to sell if he is given the funds to secure a competent replacement. In his injury absence, United have seen the emergence of both Scott McTominay and Fred as a defensive partnership, with Andreas Pereira alongside the duo. However, a fit and motivated Pogba would no doubt improve the side.
According to a story in the Daily Mail, Juventus plan to raise the possibility of a transfer for Pogba as they believe the 26-year-old French midfielder would prefer to join them instead of Real Madrid, who have long been linked with the transfer. They will do that as United pursue Mario Mandzukic.
Mandzukic has been frozen out of the first team by new boss Maurizio Sarri, and is still expected to join United in the winter transfer window to provide support to the current attacking line-up of Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Daniel James.