Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says his talks with Paul Pogba have been “positive” amid reports linking the France midfielder with a move to Paris Saint Germain.
Pogba is out of contract at the end of the coming season and is yet to agree a new deal with United. The 28-year-old has repeatedly been linked with a transfer away from Old Trafford during his second spell with the club.
Going home to France could appeal to Pogba if PSG make a bid and United could decide to sell now rather than risk losing him on a free transfer. But Solskjaer insists the World Cup winner remains positive about his United future.
“I hope every player thinks this is the place to be to win trophies,” Solskjaer told reporters. “When you sign for Manchester United, you have to rise to the challenge. Paul has come back and he’s fresh and he’s always such a positive boy. The talks I’ve had with him have all been positive.”
Having finished second in the Premier League last season before losing the Europa League final against Villarreal, United have added Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane to their squad.
England forward Sancho arrived from Borussia Dortmund before United agreed a deal for Real Madrid’s French centre-back Varane. Solskjaer admits further high-profile additions are less likely following that spree.
“Anything from now is a bonus,” he said when asked about further signings before the deadline. “I have to say that with the two signings we’ve got, we’ve strengthened where we wanted to strengthen. Let’s see what happens. You never know in football. Anything can happen, ins and outs.”
Solskjaer hopes to have Sancho and Varane on the bench for United’s Premier League opener against Leeds next weekend.
Ending United’s four-year trophy drought is Solskjaer’s goal this season as he looks to win the first silverware of his reign. United finished 12 points behind champions Manchester City and paid the price for a slow start.
“Pep (Guardiola) said ‘You can’t win the league in the first eight games but you can lose the chance to win it,’ and that’s what happened to us last season,” Solskjaer said.
Talking up United’s title chances, Solskjaer added: “I’d rather be an optimist and be wrong than a pessimist and be right. Of course these boys can, with a maximum effort and maximum sacrifice.
“It feels like this season coming up is one of the strongest Premier League seasons. It’s been City and Liverpool fighting it out for a while but us and Chelsea have spent well and should look at ourselves as potential challengers.”