MX23RW : Tuesday, July 17 13:52:21

France boss Didier Deschamps: 'Paul Pogba can't do everything'

Deschamps: 'Pogba can't do everything'
© Reuters
France boss Didier Deschamps defends star man Paul Pogba ahead of the 2018 World Cup, insisting that Les Bleus have the "complete midfielder" in their ranks.

Didier Deschamps has described Paul Pogba as "a complete midfielder", but insists that the Manchester United ace cannot do it all on his own for France.

Getting the best out of the £89m superstar has been the biggest challenge for Deschamps in the run-up to the World Cup in Russia, which begins for Les Bleus with a meeting against Australia next Saturday.

Pogba was far from his best in France's 3-1 win over Italy, and he has also recently been jeered by certain sections of the fanbase, but Deschamps has now leapt to the defence of the 25-year-old.

"He's a midfielder indeed. He's not a No.10, not a forward," he told reporters. "He can always score, but he's a midfielder, a complete midfielder, but he can't do everything. It's nuanced. He has the potential, that is quite important.

"We talked about [the jeering], and Paul knows it wasn't his best match. He's conscious about that. But the team needs him and he certainly needs freedom inside the team, but there was one match where he didn't play so well.

"You used the term to public [about whistling], the audience, they are part of the spectacle, and sometimes they don't really know what they do. Of course it's not nice when things like that happen in the stadium, but it's always a minority who does such things.

"And most of the times for reasons that are not really reasonable. Sometimes it's just about the club where they play, or something else. But all of those players, they are French players, they wear the same jersey and I know that the big majority of the public and all supporters are 100% behind Les Bleus."

Pogba ended the 2017-18 campaign with six goals and 10 assists for Man United in 27 Premier League outings.

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Paul Pogba and Hugo Lloris during a France training session in March 2018
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