Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has hit back at critics of Paul Pogba, sarcastically calling them "Einsteins". The Portuguese boss was thrilled with Pogba's two-goal performance in United's 4-1 win against Fenerbahce in the Europa League, and subsequently rubbished recent criticism of his world-record signing.
Pogba, 23, scored a penalty and a spectacular long range effort during the one-sided match at Old Trafford, after struggling to make an impact in United's dull 0-0 draw against Liverpool on Monday night (17 October). But following his stellar performance in Europe, Mourinho rounded on Pogba's critics.
"Two days ago, especially for the Einsteins, he was the worst player of the Premier League, and 48 hours later he is phenomenal," the United manager explained, according to The Times.
Mourinho – who managed Inter Milan from 2008 until 2010 – said Pogba will need time to adjust to the English game, having made an £89m ($108.3m) move from Italian giants Juventus. However, the outspoken coach is confident that his summer signing will come good in the coming weeks.
"He needs time," the United boss stressed. "I was in Italy and I know Italian football. I know the characteristics and the intensity and to be there for four or five years, and to come back to the Premier League, I was not expecting that in a click of fingers he gets that intensity. He needs time."
Pogba, meanwhile, admitted he enjoyed the part he played in United's win over Fenerbahce, which moved the Reds into second position in their Europa League group. "It's a great feeling and a great performance from the team. We played very well and scored a lot of goals," the Frenchman explained to the official United website.
"We enjoy playing like that and we have to be ready for the big games coming up. We wanted that win and it was very important. Scoring goals for me makes me very happy. I just try to play 100% all the time."