Okay, not Paul, who plays in the Champions League Final today for Juventus, but his brother Florentin Pogba, currently a 24-year old centre back for Saint-Étienne.
Pogba made 18 starts and 23 total appearances across all competitions for Les Verts this season, starting the majority of the club’s games as the first-choice centre back before a midseason injury sidelined him until May.
He’s also broken back into the Guinean squad and appeared for them at this year’s Africa Cup of Nations, where he suffered the thigh injury that threatened to end his season.
The snippet from L’Equipe mentions that other English and Spanish teams are interested in Pogba, however, Villa’s interest is the most notable at this instance.
Jonathan Johnson — a Ligue 1 writer for various sites, including ESPN — suggested a fee as large as €3 million (£2.2 million), falling right in line with where we might expect Villa to be conducting most of their business this summer.
@i_r_sean88 Anywhere up to €3m I would imagine— Jonathan Johnson (@Jon_LeGossip) June 6, 2015
Villa’s efforts to bring Pogba to the club should be boosted by his contract situation, as the player is set to become a free agent at the end of next season. Thus, Saint-Étienne might be keen to get something out of the 24-year old rather than seeing him walk in 12 months.
And with Ron Vlaar considering leaving the club and Philippe Senderos having been told to find a new club, centre back has become a sudden position of need for Villa, as they could enter July with as few as two holdovers from the current squad at the position, with Nathan Baker’s future also in question.
And with more than just the numbers of money, Pogba would seem to fit the recruitment strategy we’re expecting Tim Sherwood to employ. He’s still a young player, especially as a defender, and would seem to be a guy you could get contributing in a positive manner. At 24, he’s set to be entering the prime of his career in the next few years, and that’s exactly the type of player Villa should be targeting. A good, realistic, affordable signing who can do the trick and make the club a little bit of money in two or three years’ time.
If we’re rating the likeliness of this deal, I’d probably put it right in the middle as far as transfer rumours go. I wouldn’t call it overly likely, but it doesn’t seem far-fetched at all. If Villa are in for Pogba, it’ll mean Sherwood’s looking abroad, which can only be a good thing.
What are your thoughts on a potential move to Villa for the elder Pogba? Excited by the prospect? Feel the club’s falling into the same traps it did under Paul Lambert? Let us know in the comments!