Paul Pogba’s Instagram post explanation ‘garbage’, says Gary Neville as Manchester United star faces fine

Pogba is set to be disciplined by the club after being accused of Neville of ‘dancing on the grave’ of Jose Mourinho following his dismissal as Manchester United manager

Jack de Menezes
Wednesday 19 December 2018 08:52 GMT
Jose Mourinho sacked as Manchester United manager

Gary Neville has labelled Paul Pogba’s explanation for his poorly-timed Instagram post in the wake of Jose Mourinho’s sacking as “garbage” and has accused the Manchester United midfielder of “dancing on the grave” of the dismissed manager.

Mourinho was sacked on Tuesday morning after two-and-a-half years at the helm of United, having replaced Louis van Gaal in 2016. Having won the League Cup and Europa League in his first season at Old Trafford, Mourinho’s side has fallen apart this season amid rifts between the manager and the squad and his own preference not to work under a technical director despite the club’s desire to appoint one.

It led to the sudden dismissal of the Portuguese on Tuesday by United’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward, who looks set to appoint former striker Ole Gunnar Solskjaer on an interim basis until the end of the season, when United will then pursue a long-term target of the like of Mauricio Pochettino and Zinedine Zidane.

But just an hour after United publicly confirmed Mourinho’s departure, Pogba posted an Instagram message saying “Caption this” along with an image of him smirking.

Adidas have claimed that the post was a pre-scheduled advert that had been planned before news of Mourinho’s sacking had emerged that wasn’t deleted in time. But the club have taken a dim view on the incident and look set to fine Pogba as the post was ‘disrespectful’ towards the outgoing manager.

Despite only being live for 10 minutes before it was deleted, Pogba’s post was liked more than 64,000 times and was picked up by Neville, who wrote on Twitter: “Caption this: You do one as well!”

It triggered Adidas’ explanation, but Neville dismissed the claim and criticised Pogba for his actions immediately after Mourinho lost his job.

“There is probably a high level of dislike there, but Jose Mourinho lost his job this morning and Paul Pogba and his people put that post out – don’t fall for this coincidence scheduled tweet nonsense, it’s garbage, absolute garbage,” Neville said on Sky Sports’ The Debate on Tuesday night.

“I think he would have liked to have gone public earlier on Jose, and how the club is at this moment in time. But on Jose’s side, I bet he thought when Paul Pogba won the World Cup in the summer he was coming back to an impossible situation where he thought this player is going to be out of control now.

Paul Pogba deleted this Instagram post shortly after Jose Mourinho had been sacked (Instagram/@paulpogba)

“I do believe that dancing on the grave of the manager who has just been sacked is out of order. Paul Pogba, there is no doubt, has fallen out with the manager. He doesn’t believe in him, he doesn’t like him, he doesn’t think he’s a good coach probably, and vice-versa.

“Jose Mourinho doesn’t think Paul Pogba is as good a player as he thinks he is. There’s been a complete breakdown in the last six months between the pair of them, probably the last year.”

Reports suggested that Pogba was seen high-fiving teammates at training on Tuesday morning while defender Luke Shaw arrived at their Carrington training base smiling and giving photographers the thumbs-up, just minutes after Mourinho’s dismissal.

It all adds to the belief that Mourinho had lost the dressing room, as The Independent understands that “more than 90 per cent” of the squad had turned on the Portuguese and wanted him out of the club.

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