X

Ryan Giggs Says Paul Pogba, David De Gea Must Lead Manchester United Players

Rob Blanchette@@_Rob_BFeatured ColumnistOctober 25, 2019

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 22:  Paul Pogba  and David De Gea of Manchester United warm up during a training session ahead of their UEFA Champions League Group H match against Juventus at Aon Training Complex on October 22, 2018 in Manchester, England.  (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)
Jan Kruger/Getty Images

Ryan Giggs has said Paul Pogba, David De Gea and Ashley Young need to provide leadership to Manchester United's youthful core. 

The Wales manager told beIN Sport (h/t Joe Bray of the Manchester Evening News) his former club must look towards the trio to lead the dressing room while Ole Gunnar Solskjaer rebuilds the squad.

beIN SPORTS @beINSPORTS

Join @CarrieBrownTV as she sits down with #ManUtd legend Ryan #Giggs 👇 #beINUEL #UEL #MUFC https://t.co/RewzyGpCg2

Giggs explained the United team he broke into as a teenager was packed with experience, and Solskjaer does not have depth in this department:

"Times are different now. The first team I was in you had [Steve] Bruce, [Peter] Schmeichel, [Mark] Hughes, [Bryan] Robson, [Paul] Ince, [Roy] Keane. Players like that don't grow on trees, and football is a little bit different now.

"So probably don't get as many characters and leaders in dressing rooms now, but you've got Paul Pogba who's a World Cup winner, you've got David de Gea who's won leagues, Ashley Young who's been there a long time who maybe fans don't see but I've seen them in the dressing room.

"So these are the kinds of players that need to help the younger players who are just trying to find their way in their football careers."

BELGRADE, SERBIA - OCTOBER 24: manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (L) of Manchester United celebrate with Anthony Martial (C) and Marcus Rashford (R) after the UEFA Europa League group L match between Partizan and Manchester United at Partizan Stadium on Octobe
Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images

Solskjaer won his first away match since his full-time appointment with a 1-0 victory in Thursday's UEFA Europa League visit to Partizan Belgrade.

The pressure has been building on the Norwegian, with United securing only 10 points from their opening nine Premier League games.

However, summer signings Harry Maguire, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Daniel James have shown promise during the opening weeks, and their performances suggest the coach is rebuilding the starting XI in the correct manner.

BELGRADE, SERBIA - OCTOBER 24: Umar Sadiq (L) of Partizan is challenged by Aaron Wan-Bissaka (R) of Manchester United during the UEFA Europa League group L match between Partizan and Manchester United at Partizan Stadium on October 24, 2019 in Belgrade, S
Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images

Giggs added he believes his former team-mate must continue to invest during future transfer windows while trying to maintain results: 

"It's not easy, especially for Ole. What he's trying to do, he's trying to build for the future but also try and win games in the present which is not easy especially if you've got a few injuries.

"You need a few transfer windows to get your playing philosophy over, get the players you need. You can't do it overnight.

"But of course, Manchester United, the scrutiny that you're under, you need to win every game. If you don't, there's questions. There's pressure from outside so Ole knows that."

BELGRADE, SERBIA - OCTOBER 24: Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (C) of Manchester United celebrate with Harry Maguire (R) and Jesse Lingard (L) after the UEFA Europa League group L match between Partizan and Manchester United at Partizan Stadium on October 24
Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images

Performances stalled at the end of last season when it seemed United could storm into the top four. Solskjaer's men are yet to reproduce the electric form they produced immediately after the manager took interim control last December.

The Red Devils' defence has certainly improved with Maguire and Wan-Bissaka in place, but United must quickly find a solution in January for their woes and misgivings in midfield. Pogba has been missing through injury, and the weakness in depth has been exposed.

When everyone is fit, United have a capable side, but several squad players are now past their best, with the team remaining in long-term transition.

🚨 SPORTS NEWS ➡️ YOUR INBOX

The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.