It has been nearly three months since Paul Pogba and Antoine Griezmann finished on the winning side of the World Cup final. In the meantime, a lot has changed. Pogba has returned to Manchester United, had a couple of fallout with Jose Mourinho and has scored two Premier League goals in an arid start to the new season.
However, most importantly, despite the rows, Mourinho handed Pogba the captain’s armband when Antonio Valencia missed the first couple of games. And that brings into question whether Pogba, always a center of attraction in off-the-field controversies, is actually suitable for this honour.
As the midfielder is back with his national team for the upcoming friendlies, Griezmann has raised his voice to share his appreciation for his compatriot. According to the Atletico Madrid superstar, Pogba indeed is great when it comes to motivational words before an important fixture.
“Paul has really moved up a notch in the dressing room. He had the right words, which has pushed us,” Griezmann told L’Equipe. “Hugo, Raph and Blaise, we knew that they were there, but Paul, yes, we became more surprised and the way he spoke, it did us good.”
The Frenchman also talked about the sense of humour Pogba brings into these speeches to lighten the mood and to keep it cool for the entire team. Griezmann said, “Every time he speaks, I want to laugh. Paul is so used to the funny, which is why it surprises me. It is for this reason that when he speaks, Paul never looked at me. He knows that I would have a small smile, due to which he can laugh at any time.”
Meanwhile, during his press conference with RMC, Paul Pogba talked about how the World Cup title has changed the life for him and his teammates. “The impact of the World Cup is global. People’s way of looking at us has changed. If you want to walk around with your shirt off, you can’t do it anymore anywhere in the world”, the charismatic United star said.
“Hugo’s example can serve us well. Something that happens in your private life will come out and make a bit more noise because you’re world champion”, Pogba sounded a bit concerned with the attention. “It’s a human being, we’re still human beings. People have to think about that. We are world champions, yes, but we are also human beings.
At the same time, he knows the seriousness of this feat, “After this World Cup, children will have the image that we had after the 1998 World Cup. We’ll be role models for those children. That’s why we have to be an example. Even if you don’t want to, you have to be an example. You will always have that image of a footballer who won the World Cup.”