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Mourinho: “Pogba has a huge influence”

José Mourinho admitted that Manchester United just weren’t the same without Pogba as the Frenchman returned to the squad and helped to crash Newcastle United in the Premier League match.

Manchester United were 0-1 down at Old Trafford but Pogba managed to score himself and provide another one – so he played a crucial role while his side came from behind and won the match 4-1. The France international missed 12 matches with a hamstring injury and the Red Devils are eight points behind the league leaders, Manchester City, maybe also because of this fact.

José Mourinho insisted that Pogba has become irreplaceable as his side struggled to score without him, according to ESPN“He affects our football. When he was injured I decided to close my mouth, we cannot be crying, we have to find solutions that we have. But we all know — myself, and the fellow players — that some players influence the level of the team. So with him, we had much more creation. It looks like he was not out, he comes back with a great performance, really great performance, great influence in the game.”

He also spoke about his star player’s current fitness: “I agree with him he had to make the decision of coming out if he feels the first sign of fatigue because we don’t want to go over the limit, so he played a little bit more than an hour and for that hour it looked like he wasn’t for such a long time without playing football. Let’s see the best decision for Wednesday is to play him or rest because he’s the player we need to protect.”

The Portuguese coach praised his opponent, Rafa Benítez: “We didn’t start well but I don’t blame my players, I blame, in the positive sense, I blame [Rafael] Benitez. Very experienced, very intelligent, the team was very well organised, they start very well, creating us problems, we couldn’t play sometimes in our defensive areas but the goal was like a wake-up call and the team reacted very, very well and very strong.”