Injuries, racketeering, death of his agent, family torn apart… Paul Pogba’s annus horribilis

6:30 a.m., September 13, 2022

Whatever the aim, it cannot be said that the Pogba affair promotes maraboutage. If, as his older brother Mathias seemed to affirm, Paul used it to cast a spell on Kylian Mbappé, it’s failed: nothing interferes with the planned rise of the striker of the France team and of PSG. If, as he would have explained to the investigators during his hearings revealed by Franceinfo, the world champion paid a marabout of his entourage to protect himself from the injuries, which enamel his course since the coronation of 2018, it is also missed : 2022 is a physical glitches ray calamity. And not that, we know, this probably explaining that. “It’s been a very tough year. blows a close. But he is very religious and has his head on his shoulders. The trials, he knows how to overcome them. »

Hit in the hamstrings at the end of 2021 then in the calf in the spring, Paul Pogba missed half of Manchester United’s matches, with whom the tormented story ended on April 19, then the June international window with the France team. At the end of July, two weeks after his official return to Juventus Turin, his right knee gave way. The five-week “conservative therapy” then chosen turned out to be a failure. The meniscus injury got worse. On Monday, his return to training was cut short, and the Frenchman was operated on during the day. His surgeon estimated eight weeks the time needed before returning to the group. Three weeks before the World Cup in Qatar (November 20-December 18).

The 29-year-old midfielder with 91 caps may well keep his “head held high” and smile at life, his chances of being there are “compromised”, as his captain in the national team, Hugo Lloris, regrets. For Didier Deschamps, who will announce Thursday his list for the League of Nations matches against Austria and Denmark (September 22 and 25), final reunion before the World Cup, this prospect is a tile. Certainly, the French reservoir is deep, but the duo with N’Golo Kanté (also injured) is a wall carrying his organization. Pogba in blue is the real Pogba. In any case another Pogba, the one that the Red Devils have rarely been able to appreciate in six seasons, far from expectations and the 105 million euros invested to recruit him.

Read also – “Extortion attempts” on Paul Pogba: the French police seized of the investigation

Image of the united family

On the eve of his last exercise in England, here is what the person concerned said: “Whatever the hardships, I will always be surrounded by my family, this family that I founded, the one that saw me grow. This year I’m going to need it. This new season […] going to be intense and decisive for the rest of my career. » Words that launch episode 5 of the docu-series The Pogmentary, released in June on Prime Video, and which curiously resonate a year later. Since August 27 and the confusing video of his brother Mathias promising “revelations” embarrassingly, the image of the family united, dancing and united around the love of the ball and the mother, Yeo Moriba, was shattered. This outing mainly exposed in the public square a case of extortion in an organized gang for which the Paris prosecutor’s office opened a judicial investigation.

The day before the France team rally in March, Paul Pogba was allegedly taken by “friends” to an apartment and threatened by two armed men demanding 13 million euros from him for pseudo-protection – the latter will get 100,000 euros. At Clairefontaine, no one was aware, no one had detected the slightest sign. Paul Pogba had even granted an interview to Le Figaro during which he returned to the burglary of which he had been the victim the previous week. During a Champions League match, three people broke into his house while his children and the nanny were there. Two months earlier, he had fired a relative from his home who had siphoned 200,000 euros from him using his credit card. The sequence challenges. At this level, the coincidence is prodigious…

Mino, who was not one to be impressed by two suburban dudes, could no longer serve as a shield

These terrifying events, which are increasingly common in the world of football, also correspond to the period when Paul Pogba’s agent was forced to take a step back, before being suddenly killed by a lung disease on April 30. “It probably accentuated all that, concedes a French colleague. Mino, who was not one to be impressed by two suburban guys, could no longer serve as a shield. » Mino was Carmine Raiola. Famous for his earthiness, his closeness to his clients (Zlatan Ibrahimovic, in particular) and his gargantuan commissions – Football Leaks have revealed that he took in €49m from Pogba’s transfer in 2016. According to an insider, the problem existed before, and his agent solved it ” somehow “. The prospect of changing clubs, synonymous with a signing bonus, and the release of his series have whetted appetites.

The role troubles his brother

It wasn’t until July, after three men visited Juve’s training ground, where he had just signed, following another attempt at intimidation in April in Manchester, that the international decided to go to court. Among them, he would therefore have identified his brother Mathias. For many, his role in this story remains murky. ” No one understand, confides Macky Sylla, founder of the organization 48 Hours for Guinea, of which Mathias is president. I can’t tell myself it’s him talking, it’s not the person I know. I would like to hear his version but I can no longer reach him. » In June, this friend of the Pogba family organized Paul’s tour of Guinea, the country for which his two brothers played. Neither Mathias, detained in Morocco, nor his twin Florentine, who is pursuing his career in India, were there.

I can’t tell myself that it’s him who speaks, it’s not the person I know

According to Franceinfo, Paul formulated, with the investigators who auditioned him, the thesis of a brother ” under pressure “ racketeers. On Friday, Mathias came out of the silence through his lawyer, saying to himself “completely foreign to any extortion maneuver”evoking the “difficulties” family like “the result of external threats” and aspirant “more than anything to calm the situation with his brother”. Far from the virulence of messages on social networks. By extension, it was therefore a question of Kylian Mbappé. A priori a means of attracting attention that worked well. This supposed case of maraboutage three months before the World Cup agitated the environment. For Deschamps and his staff, this is not a subject. What is is that Pogba is a victim and his presence in Qatar is uncertain. Compassion emerged less from the words of the PSG striker who, “in the interests of selection”decided to “trust the word of a teammate” having called him to give him his version of the facts.

Injuries, racketeering, death of his agent, family torn apart… Paul Pogba’s annus horribilis