How Varane signing affects Pogba's Man Utd future
Raphael Varane is edging closer to a summer transfer to Manchester United and the move could have a positive impact in more ways than one.
There were widespread reports in the European media on Thursday that Real Madrid star Varane had agreed personal terms with Manchester United – and that the next step was for the two clubs to negotiate a transfer fee.
Varane is keen for a new challenge after spending a decade at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Man Utd have made the signing of a top-class centre-back a priority this summer, and Varane is top of their shortlist.
The signing of one of the world’s best defenders would naturally represent a massive coup for a club who are also on the verge of buying Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund.
Will Pogba stay at Man Utd?
And Varane’s signing could also convince Paul Pogba to remain at Old Trafford.
Pogba’s contract expires in the summer of 2022, meaning he can leave the club for free next year if he doesn’t pen a new deal.
Man Utd are desperate for Pogba to extend his contract in order to regain control over his future and protect his transfer value.
It had seemed almost certain earlier in the 2020/21 season that the World Cup winner wouldn’t be penning an extension.
The relationship between the Frenchman and the club hit rock bottom towards the end of 2020 following some controversial remarks made in the press by both the player and his agent Mino Raiola.
This relationship has improved this calendar year and this reignited hope that Pogba would stay many more years with the club.
However, talks to extend his contract have still made no headway.
Nevertheless, Pogba can’t help but be impressed by Man Utd’s transfer business if they complete the signings of one of Europe’s best youngsters, Sancho, and one of the premier defenders, Varane.
Having failed to win – or truly challenge for - the Premier League or Champions League in the five years since he returned to Man Utd from Juventus, now there would be a team who can realistically dream of such honours.
Pogba and Varane's friendship
It should also be noted that Pogba and Varane are very close friends and their careers have been very intertwined. They were born only a few months apart, came through the France youth setup together and made their Les Bleus senior debuts in the same game in 2013 against Georgia.
Together they played a pivotal role in France winning the 2018 World Cup.
"When you say he is a teammate, he is a true teammate," Pogba once said of Varane. "We progress together."
It should also be noted that, with the exception of PSG, there are no other top European clubs who are in a realistic economic position to sign Pogba this summer.
Juventus and Real Madrid are both interested but their best chance of signing Pogba would be on a Bosman transfer in 2022.
Thus, the signing of Varane could go a long way to convincing Pogba to at least stay for one more year at Old Trafford.