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What the Pogba ‘Domino Effect’ means for Man Utd

COMMENT: As the Paul Pogba transfer saga drags on, it seems there are already plenty of dominoes, aka players, preparing to tumble as a result of the record breaking deal Jose Mourinho is lining up at Old Trafford.

The omission of a handful of players from his touring United squad over to China and Sweden has given us a bit of insight into the players likely to bow out of the club with Mourinho stating rather firmly that he won't give any playing minutes to players he deems surplus to requirements.

A requirement that will undeniably shift should Pogba return to the club.

These are those who will be effected by the impending arrival of the Juventus star.

Adnan Januzaj

Ironically, much like when a younger, less polished Pogba was pushed out of the club, it seems another promising if not yet quality midfielder is set to depart the club.

Adnan Jazunaj has shown glimpses of brilliance but a failed loan with Borussia Dortmund and his underwhelming return has meant the winger hasn't been given the game time to grow as a player. Omitted from Mourinho's pre-season squad and reportedly told to look for a new club, it seems the return of the previous Red Devils young gun is forcing one that hasn't yet fired to leave.

Where to is still unclear but David Moyes, the man that gave Januzaj his United debut, does want him at Sunderland. The Black Cats need to sign players across the park and should have enough funds to secure the deal. Whether Januzaj is interested is unknown though with higher profile clubs such as AC Milan and Lazio reportedly keeping track of the situation and likely to prove a more attractive option.

Marouane Fellaini

Another player Moyes wants to bring to Sunderland from his former club is Marouane Fellaini. The Belgian midfielder played under Moyes at Everton and was then brought to United by Moyes but like him has struggled since making the switch.

Many thought he was a certainty to leave the club over the summer but he did travel with the touring United squad and even scored in their game against Galatasaray. Though his inclusion alone says a lot, whether he'll be getting any game time should Pogba arrive is another question altogether. They both play similar roles and Fellaini could well decide to leave before squandering a season on the bench.

Interestingly, Moyes did say in his first press conference for Sunderland that he doesn't think he is capable of luring Fellaini to the club but a move elsewhere could well be on the cards, if and when Pogba stakes his claim over the United midfield.

Bastian Schweinsteiger

Brought in for a hefty sum last summer, the 32-year-old Schweinsteiger has recently announced his international retirement with Germany and is likely nearing the end of his Manchester United career.

Plagued by injuries, the veteran midfielder wasn't included in Mourinho's pre-season squad and has been sensationally ordered to train with United's under-23 team. Considering his age and current situation, Pogba's arrival at Old Trafford would all but end the German's time in United's midfield and indeed colours.

Currently raking in well over £100,000 a week, the Red Devils should they acquire Pogba would love to see Schweinsteiger move on to free up some cash.

Cameron Borthwick-Jackson & Paddy McNair

Two more young players nearing an Old Trafford exit are defenders Borthwick-Jackson and McNair.

Aged 19 and 21 respectively, both still have some developing to do with Newcastle United boss Rafa Benitez believed to be monitoring the duo.

A switch to the Championship might be just what both players need with Mourinho likely open to loaning Borthwick-Jackson and selling McNair as he looks to further get rid of players surplus to requirements with Pogba reportedly set to sign a
£220,000-a-week contract.

Will Keane

Despite this 23-year-old striker scoring the first United goal under Mourinho, it would appear Will Keane is close to an Old Trafford exit. Like Pogba, Keane has made his way through United's youth academy but made just two senior appearances since 2011.

A loanee at Preston North End last season, Keane fell to injury halfway through the campaign and really needs to get some game time under his belt if he his to truly develop. United seem to accept this fact and as they look to compensate the Pogba deal are, according to ESPN, happy to sell the striker for around

Memphis Depay

Considering his disappointing start to life at Old Trafford, Depay could well find himself pushed aside with the imminent arrival of Pogba.

The attacking midfielder hasn't exactly hit the ground running and his chances to redeem himself with Pogba's arrival, and that of Henrikh Mkhitaryan, will likely be few and far between with United's attacking options now well stocked.

That said, don't expect him to fall straight away, rather consider Depay a domino teetering on the edge.

Gonzalo Higuian

While in no way involving Manchester United at this stage, Argentinian striker Gonzalo Higuian's big money transfer to Juventus from Napoli seems to me like a preemptive Pogba-related domino fall.

In the Italian giants splashing so much cash on the striker would suggest that they are expecting some serious money to come in. If they do get the full amount touted for Pogba, they would indeed still have money to spare.

So there you have it, the pieces are all lined up and all it will take now is for Paul Pogba to put pen to United paper for supporters to be filled with glee and subsequently, a few high profile Red Devils left to fall.

Joshua Thomas
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Joshua Thomas

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