Winners in Paul Pogba transfer saga: his mom and his agent

So the Paul Pogba  move to Manchester United is official. Late Monday night the English club issued a statement that the 23-year-old Frenchman completed his transfer from Italian club Juventus and signed a five-year contract, with the option to extend for a sixth year. What it didn't say: Pogba's annual salary of $20 million.

In his statement, Pogba said he was delighted to rejoin United, noting that it "has always been a club with a special place in my heart."

Special? Pogba started his pro career with Manchester United but left after playing only three EPL games in his one season at Old Trafford. He famously cried in Alex Ferguson's office when the then-United manager brought Paul Scholes out of retirement in January 2012 and wouldn't play the 18-year-old Frenchman, supposedly as retaliation for not re-signing with United.

Ferguson went to Pogba's house, and his mother, Yeo Moriba, told the longtime United manager her son wanted out. He was soon transferred to Juventus, where he won four Serie A titles in four seasons.

"Nowadays," Moriba told AFP just before Euro 2016, "you'd have to say I know a bit about football. You can't fool me."

That was not the first time she had stared down powerful soccer interests. When United lured Pogba away from the Le Havre academy, French club presidents, tired of English clubs stealing their top youth products, cried foul and tried to block the move.

"I didn't appreciate them trying to look down at us," Moriba said. "I raised my voice. They found that weird."

Pogba, who was joined by his mother in Manchester for Monday's signing, left United for Juventus on a $1.5 million transfer and returns from Juve for a fee of $130 million. That's a tidy profit for Juventus, but the Italian club won't keep all the money.

Pogba's agent Mino Raiola, will get a reported 30 percent cut of the Pogba transfer fee.

The Italian-born Raiola got into the soccer agency business when he worked at his parents' Italian restaurant in the Netherlands and got to know pro soccer players who came in for pizza. Soon he was representing Dutch stars Wim Jonk, Bryan Roy and Dennis Bergkamp and later Czech star Pavel Nedved, winner of the 2002 Ballon d'Or.

Raiola has become Manchester United's favored agent. He also represents Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Henrikh Mkhitaryan, who signed with United from Paris St. Germain and Borussia Dortmund, respectively.

2 comments about "Winners in Paul Pogba transfer saga: his mom and his agent".
  1. Stephen Selby, August 9, 2016 at 9:15 a.m.

    Great article as usual Paul, however some of your comments seem incorrect.
    Pogba was at OT 2009-2012, though true his only senior team games were in 2011-12.
    Most accounts in the European media have stated that Raiola's cut is 20% not 30%, though who wouldn't want a $20+ million for getting the deal and $4 million ongoing for the length of the contract.
    Keep up the great work, been a longtime reader of your articles and always look forward to reading them.
    Steve S.

  2. beautiful game, August 10, 2016 at 9:29 p.m.

    "He (Pogba) was soon transferred to Juventus, where he won four Serie A titles in four seasons." Juventus won the titles, he was on the squad which won...and, IMHO, he hasn't proven to be $20M worthy.

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