Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has dismissed speculation linking Paul Pogba with a move to Real Madrid, saying the midfielder is "going nowhere."
Throughout the summer, Pogba was linked with a transfer to the La Liga side, having said he was keen for a new challenge ahead of the 2019-20 season. The Frenchman ended up staying at Old Trafford, but speculation about a switch to Spain has continued to simmer.
Speaking ahead of the Red Devils' clash with West Ham United in the Premier League on Sunday, Solskjaer made it clear he has no issue with Pogba, per Paul Wilson of the Guardian:
"I don't listen to the president of Real Madrid. I am not worried now and I will never be worried in the future about Paul staying here. If it all kicks off again in January, there will be no worries then either. If we have to live with the speculation again, then we will handle it like we did in the summer.
"Paul is going nowhere, he is working hard and is totally committed to Manchester United. He is one of our big characters, someone who will walk out on to any pitch and be full of confidence. That's what I look for in a United player. You need a big personality to play for this club."
Solskjaer told the press on Friday that the ankle injury that saw Pogba miss the recent wins against Leicester City and Astana would likely keep him out of the West Ham game.
Per Jose Felix Diaz of Marca (h/t Dominic Booth of the Manchester Evening News), Madrid president Florentino Perez discussed Pogba recently and said the club is "working to bring great players in the future."
It's been reported by Julien Laurens of ESPN FC that United are looking to discuss a new contract with Pogba. His deal has two years left to run, although the Red Devils have the option to trigger another season should they wish.
The United midfielder continues to divide opinion among the club's fanbase, but he was a key man for the team in attack last season:
Prior to his recent injury, Pogba also showed an appetite in the early weeks of the current campaign, offering a dynamic presence in midfield:
The Frenchman can be frustrating, though. He often dallies in possession and can lose the ball cheaply, while spells of matches can go by wherein his influence is minimal.
With Pogba seemingly keen on a move to Madrid, it would be a shock if he did sign a new contract at United anytime soon. Any extension would likely hinder his chances of getting a move to the Santiago Bernabeu.
The Red Devils are short of midfield options, with no signings drafted in to replace Marouane Fellaini and Ander Herrera, who both left the club this year. With that in mind as well as Solskjaer's comments, it would be a big surprise if Pogba did make a switch in January.