PAUL POGBA is hoping to return to the pitch next month – despite recently going under the knife.
The Juventus and France midfielder was expected to be on the sidelines until November after undergoing knee surgery earlier this month.
But the 29-year-old is reportedly hoping to return to action on October 25.
That’s according to Tuttosport, who claim the former Manchester United man has earmarked Juve’s Champions League clash with Benfica in Lisbon for his return.
The next ten days, however, are said to be “decisive” in his recovery from a meniscus injury.
Pogba is said to be moving to the second phase of his recovery, transitioning from swimming and gym work to on-the-pitch exercises.
The midfielder is currently a major doubt for France’s defence of the World Cup in Qatar this winter and manager Didier Deschamps insists he must be fully fit to be selected in his 23-man squad.
Deschamps said: “He will not come just because he is a ‘framework’.
“If he has not played before and is not in top form, it is useless. He himself does not want it.”
Pogba anticipated a quick recovery from the potentially tournament-ending injury shortly after going under the knife.
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The Frenchman said: “The operation went very well, I’m going to recover and come back very, very quickly.
“I wanted to thank you all for your messages, for your support.
“Know that mentally I’m okay despite all the worries, the injury, and the other problems. Mentally I’m okay.”
Deschamps, however, is refusing to plan for Pogba being a dead cert for his squad.
The former Chelsea midfielder said: “I know Paul well.
“He will do everything to recover as soon as possible, but he will only be called up if he is fit and competitive.
“But it’s too early to say that today.”