09 August 2016
Juventus Football Club can today confirm that Paul Pogba has completed a move to Manchester United for a fee of €105 million to be paid in two financial years. The consideration may increase by € 5 million on achieving given conditions in the course of the duration of the contract.
The agreed sum surpasses the previous record set by the transfer of Gareth Bale to Real Madrid from Tottenham Hotspur in 2013, thus making Pogba the most valuable player in the sport’s history.
The switch sees the Frenchman return to the club with whom he made his professional debut in 2011 and brings an end to a truly remarkable four-year stay in Turin, a city in which he lifted four of the Bianconeri’s five history making consecutive Scudetto titles to go with a trio of Italian Super Cups and a pair of Coppa Italia trophies.
On an individual level, Pogba’s arrival at Juventus Stadium in the summer of 2012 and continued excellence in the heart of the side deservedly saw him progress from a promising youngster into a world-class performer, being first named European Golden Boy in 2013 before closing a magnificent 2015 with a place in both the UEFA and FIFPro teams of the year.
While Manchester would be the scene of his first steps in the game - and indeed now of his future - it was in Turin that Paul became a world-renowned star and developed into one of the most imposing and explosive midfielders on the planet.
Typically, Pogba would introduce himself to his new supporters in truly spectacular fashion. Just a month after making his bow for the club at home to Chievo in September 2012, the then 19-year-old would net his first Juventus goal against Napoli in a move that has since become synonymous with the Frenchman: one touch on the edge of the box, a sight of goal and an unstoppable finish into the corner.
Variations of that Pogba template – eventually dubbed the “Pogboom” by the home fans – came in their droves in the ensuing seasons to the extent that seeing him score in outrageous fashion became no more than a normal occurrence.
For all of the remarkable technique required for the strikes that followed against Napoli twice more, Udinese, Sampdoria and Sassuolo to name but a few, moments of their nature were typical of his time in Turin and the norm for a player and character who rarely does things in half measures.
To limit Pogba’s contributions to goals however would do him a disservice. Stepping up to the plate following the departures of a handful of influential names in the summer of 2015, a case could be made for Paul’s last Juve campaign being his greatest of all.
Not only did the 2015/16 season see him rack up a personal best tally for both goals (10) and assists (12) in all competitions, it also signalled a new development in the Frenchman’s career as a key player in the side, taking on more responsibility than ever before, not to mention the club’s famous number 10 jersey.
Indeed it would be his extraordinary opener in the Derby Della Mole last October that ignited the Bianconeri’s formidable charge to the title, while his crucial if uncharacteristically scrappy effort at the San Siro the following April seemingly confirmed it.
In Europe, assists for Mario Mandzukic in Manchester and Stephan Lichtsteiner in Monchengladbach were arguably the highlights of the team’s progression to the knockout stages and a fifth-minute tap-in at the Allianz Arena would add a first Champions League goal to his collection of all-important actions on the biggest stages in the game.
Most importantly, courtesy of a fourth Serie A title and second Coppa Italia crown, Pogba would end his final season at the club in the only way he knows how: as a winner.
Everyone associated with Juventus Football Club would like to thank Paul for his unforgettable four years of service and wish him the very best upon his return to England with Manchester United.