Paul Pogba: Player Profile

Pogba Named Young Player Of The Year In Europe

Personal information 
Full name: Paul Labile Pogba
Date of birth: 15 March 1993
Age: 20
Place of birth: Lagny-sur-Marne, France
Height: 1.90 m (6 ft 3 in)
Playing position: Midfielder

Club information
Current club: Juventus
Number: 6

Youth career 
1999–2006: Roissy-en-Brie
2006–2007: Torcy
2007–2009: Le Havre
2009–2011: Manchester United

Senior career
2011–2012: Manchester United 7 Appearances, 0 goals
2012– Juventus 54 Appearances, 10 goals
National team 
2008–2009 France U16 17 Appearances, 1 goal
2010 France U17 10 Appearances, 2 goals
2010–2011 France U18 6 Appearances, 1 goal
2011–2012 France U19 12 Appearances, 4 goals
2012–2013 France U20 9 Appearances, 2 goals
2013– France 7 Appearances, 1 goal

The former Manchester United player fought off competition from the likes of Romelu Lukaku - who finished 2nd - and Schalke's Julian Draxler and Real Madrid's Raphael Varane to be voted as winner of the 2013 Golden Boy award.

Paul Pogba has long been talked about as one of the most prominent prospects in world football, and now he's finally starting to realize some of his incredible potential.

Pogba was born in Lagny-sur-Marne, Seine-et-Marne to Guinean parents.

He began his football career at the age of six playing for US Roissy-en-Brie, a few miles south of his hometown.

He spent seven seasons at the club before joining US Torcy where he served as captain of the club's under-13 team.

After one season with Torcy, Pogba joined professional club Le Havre.

In his second season at the club, Pogba captained its under-16 team to the final phase of its domestic league.

Le Havre finished second to Lens in the final group phase finishing ahead of the likes of Lyon and Nancy.

Pogba also established himself as a youth international for his country.

He was the source of much controversy in 2009 as Manchester United poached him from Le Havre's famed academy, and already then there were suggestions he could become one of the best in the world.

Instead of exposing him to the limelight of professional football, Sir Alex Ferguson tucked the then-16-year-old into the reserves to allow him to grow in his own time.

He moved through the gears quickly—perhaps too quickly—and in 2012 became frustrated with the lack of first-team opportunities.

He seized his chance to leave at the end of his contract, selecting Juventus from reams and reams of suitors; his talent was still abundantly obvious.

Since moving to Turin he's flourished, and Antonio Conte has given the Frenchman what Sir Alex failed too - legitimate game time and an opportunity to win a place in the first XI.

The 20-year-old we see now has made colossal strides that live up to his on-field nickname (Paul the Octopus), and it seems just a matter of time before he cements his status as a world-class player.

At just 20 he towers over most midfielders, outmuscles half of them and outthinks the rest.

He's supremely confident in his own ability, and that allows him to play an expressive game without the fear of making mistakes.

There's every chance that, when fully developed at 25, he'll be unmatched as a midfield engine, capable of dominating everyone in his path.

There are few more complete players in world football even at this stage in his career, and he's shown the ability to take on almost any midfield role.

It's just another thing that makes him such a precocious talent.

Initially used as a deep lying playmaker in order to give Andrea Pirlo a rest, Pogba also spent time alongside the Italian, replacing either Arturo Vidal or Claudio Marchisio.

His physical presence and energy came to the forefront in those roles and rather than displace any of them, he has simply become an equal as the four men rotate in and out of the lineup.

By March even France coach Didier Deschamps could no longer ignore him.

He gave the quickly maturing midfielder his senior debut in a World Cup qualifier against Georgia in March, and since then he has become a staple part of the Les Bleus set up.

Praise seems to be coming from every direction as he started the new season in the same rich vein of form, contributing four goals and three assists in his first eleven starts.

Patrick Vieira was the latest to offer an opinion on his compatriot, praising him in an interview.

“Many people say that he is like I was,” the former Arsenal man told them, “I think he is more offensive than me and perhaps better technically.”

Now a coach on the opposite side of Manchester, Vieira went on to lament the fact his club allowed Pogba to leave the city last summer.

“I saw him play for United,” he added, “and Manchester City not taking him when he left was a mistake because he is an extraordinary player.”

Conte too has been impressed by his development, telling a press conference in September that the player has begun to realise his incredible potential.

“We started working on him a year ago and his progress has been incredible,” the coach told reporters.

“I saw interviews in which he said he wanted to become the best in the world. I am happy with that, because in my view he can be the best. He’s also humble, so he listens to the advice given by me and by his teammates.”

Pogba will excel regardless, and it's a matter of whether he becomes a great player or one of the best this game has ever seen.