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Jose Mourinho Reportedly Calls Paul Pogba a 'Virus' in Dressing-Room Rant

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistDecember 2, 2018

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 01:  Paul Pogba of Manchester United looks on during the warm-up before the Premier League match between Southampton FC and Manchester United at St Mary's Stadium on December 01, 2018 in Southampton, United Kingdom. (Photo by Dan Istitene/Getty Images)
Dan Istitene/Getty Images

Jose Mourinho reportedly branded Paul Pogba a "virus" after Manchester United's 2-2 draw with Southampton on Saturday.

An unnamed source in United's dressing room said as much to the Daily Record's Duncan Castles, as the coach gave the midfielder a telling off in front of his team-mates after the match.

"You don't play," Mourinho is said to have added. "You don't respect players and supporters. And you kill the mentality of the good honest people around you."

United found themselves two goals behind after 20 minutes, as Stuart Armstrong and Cedric Soares found the net, but goals from Romelu Lukaku and Ander Herrera before half-time salvaged a point.

Mourinho wasn't the only one unhappy with Pogba's performance at St. Mary's Stadium.

Samuel Luckhurst of the Manchester Evening News and broadcaster Pilib De Brun were among those critical of the Frenchman:

Samuel Luckhurst @samuelluckhurst

Mourinho said United players need to play with their brain. Paul Pogba has seemed brainless today.

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Pilib De Brún (Phil Brown) @Malachians

Pogba has once again let Utd down today. He has no discipline in his game, he plays like he’s bigger than the club.

Indeed, the playmaker was lackadaisical throughout, which often led to him carelessly ceding possession to Southampton:

WhoScored.com @WhoScored

Paul Pogba: Was dispossessed more times vs Southampton (8) than any other player has been in a Premier League match this season For more match stats -- https://t.co/B4v44uPniW https://t.co/gyDpCYEJ9y

Squawka's Muhammad Butt believes Mourinho bears responsibility for Pogba's struggles, though:

Muhammad Butt @muhammadbutt

JM in 2008: Terry is a virus! JM in 2013: Casillas is a virus! JM in 2016: Hazard is a virus! JM in 2018: Pogba is a virus! yeah, Pogba must be the problem. #MUFC

Mourinho's failure to get more from his expensively assembled squad is an ongoing concern at Old Trafford, with his side often lacking intensity or technical quality.

Their poor performances have often led to similarly poor results, as they've won just six of their 14 Premier League matches this season.

His man management has also come under scrutiny, particularly after making strongly worded comments on Luke Shaw.

However, while Mourinho's management of the team may do Pogba no favours, a player of his calibre should still be capable of producing far better than he did against Southampton.

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