Paul Pogba calls Antoine Griezmann ahead of Atletico Madrid vs Man Utd


Manchester United travel to the Spanish capital to face Atletico Madrid in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie with Atletico Madrid, with Pogba looking to continue his fine form

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Ralf Rangnick reviews Leeds win

Paul Pogba made sure to drop a call into Antoine Griezmann as the two best friends prepare to go head-to-head later this week.

Manchester United take on Atletico Madrid at the Wanda Metropolitano in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie on Wednesday night.

The clash will pit the two French internationals against each other, with Griezmann hoping to finally kick start his second spell in the Spanish capital.

Having returned from Barcelona on a loan deal which would become permanent, the 30-year-old has struggled with form and fitness and has scored just once since the start of December.

He missed eight LaLiga games either side of the winter break, but was an unused sub for Atleti’s win over Osasuna on Saturday night.






Paul Pogba shared the image on his Instagram story

Pogba, who has been beset by his own injury concerns, is set to start for the visitors, having put in another impressive display during the win over Leeds at Elland Road.

The midfielder put in a virtuous display during the opening hour against Leeds and his withdrawal by Ralf Rangnick was a shock to supporters.

His replacement Fred vindicated the manager’s decision, scoring just minutes after his introduction.

Rangnick said of the change: “Pogba did great, but after 60 minutes you could see him starting to tire, which is normal after such a long injury break.

“It was great however to bring on two energetic players like Fred and Anthony Elanga.

“With them both scoring in the end this is the best part of it but I didn’t bring them on actually to score goals.

“It was more about getting more energy into the team and playing in the similar style to how we played in the first half.”

Regardless of Fred’s goalscoring intervention, Pogba is likely to get the nod against Atletico, as United hope to take a lead back to Old Trafford.

Ahead of Wednesday’s game Pogba confirmed he had a conversation with his compatriot and close friend Griezmann, sharing a screenshot of the two on FaceTime.







Paul Pogba and Antoine Griezmann are said to be inseparable whilst on international duty with France
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Image:

Mike Hewitt – FIFA)

In total, the two have lined up together 78 times for France and both played a key role in their World Cup triumph in Russia back in 2018.

The two are said to be ‘inseparable’ when on international duty with Les Bleus and France team-mate Olivier Girioud said their off-field relationship helps with their chemistry on it.

“They find each other so well during matches. They combine well and lead by example,” Giroud said. “They are great friends outside of football as well, which helps them on the pitch.

“They are always together, always in a good mood and full of energy. It’s a great asset for our team to have two players like them.”

And whilst the pair will be on the same pitch, friendships will be hastily paused, but are set to resume shortly after the full-time whistle.

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