Video: Why Varane and Pogba are leaders
It was a good international break for Manchester United’s French players, with Anthony Martial scoring for his country and Paul Pogba and Raphael Varane helping Les Bleus to bounce back with victory against Finland after draws against Bosnia-Herzegovina and Ukraine.
A new behind-the-scenes video shared by the French Team on Twitter gave United fans something to be excited about, revealing the key leadership roles played by Pogba and Varane in the team.
Showing dressing room and tunnel action from pre-match and half-time at the Groupama Stadium in Lyon, the video begins with Varane whipping up the troops.
“We give everything guys, we regret nothing, guys,” our summer signing bellows to his teammates.
“It’s now. 90 minutes. It’s now. Afterwards we’ll have regrets. We don’t talk about it at half-time. The right attitude is now guys. Let’s win it. Let’s win it.”
Since Varane completed his move to United from Real Madrid in August – with an iconic pitch unveiling at Old Trafford – much of the talk around what he’ll add to the team surrounds his experience.
The 28-year-old won the 2018 World Cup with his country, as well as numerous titles with Real, and is clearly regarded as one of the leaders in the France camp.
Varane made his United debut against Wolves in our recent 1-0 win and could be seen offering quick advice to young right-back Aaron Wan-Bissaka. It’s nothing more than to be expected, but it was a good reminder of what Varane will bring to United’s team, as well as France’s. In the video (00:35), the centre-back can be seen talking his teammates through specifics in a similar fashion, as they receive pre-match physiotherapy.
As for Pogba, the midfielder famously delivered some stirring dressing room team talks during the victorious World Cup run and while Varane might have given the loud and proud one in this clip, Pogba’s leadership role is clear. As he walks into the tunnel, he simply repeats ‘winning mentality’ to his teammates. At half-time, with France 1-0 up, he says “Again, again, let’s go again. Let’s make some more of this.”
In the half-time break, Varane is centre stage again, saying “we’re focused right to the end. We leave them nothing. They live off our mistakes. We give them nothing. We play simple. 45 minutes guys. Come on, come on!”
It’s a talk that could easily be delivered in the United dressing room, and probably will some time soon.
Not only do the Reds have captain Harry Maguire to look to for leadership, but talismanic Portugal pair Cristiano Ronaldo and Bruno Fernandes, French duo Pogba and Varane and Sweden captain Victor Lindelof.
It's a thriving environment for improvement.