Graeme Souness says he was “astounded” by rumours linking Paul Pogba to Manchester City, and feels the move would clash with Pep Guardiola’s philosophy.

Speculation is rife over a potential move to the Etihad for Pogba following reports over the past week. The midfielder looks set to leave Manchester United for a second time this summer, with his contract at Old Trafford expiring at the end of the season.

MEN Sport understands Pogba is one possible central midfield target Guardiola and City could pursue this summer. With Fernandinho set to depart, and Ilkay Gundogan suffering from niggling injury problems this season, the Blues could be tempted into searching for reinforcements in the middle of the park.

ALSO READ: Man City stance on Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba

There is though plenty of debate over whether Pogba would suit City, given his inability to deliver on his talent on a regular basis during his time at United. Souness has been a regular vocal critic of the France international, and writing in his column for The Times, the former Liverpool midfielder urged Guardiola to reconsider making him a target.

“You can imagine my reaction when I read yesterday that Pogba was being linked with a summer move to Manchester City,” said Souness.

“Astounded covers it. I won’t say it defies football logic because that commodity is in rare supply these days but such a signing would run counter to the way Pep Guardiola likes to run a football team.

“For a start he wants his players ready to put in the hard yards – and the hard yards in the big games when City are up against it. He wants them to have the discipline and selflessness to appreciate their role in the City game plan and execute accordingly.

“Pogba probably has as much talent if not more than Bernardo Silva or Kevin de Bruyne but which two of this trio would you rely on most to carry out the manager’s instructions for the full 90? In which of Manchester United’s big games this season has Pogba shown up?

“Take the two League fixtures against Liverpool —and they don’t get much bigger than that if you are a United player. At Old Trafford, he was sent off 15 minutes after coming off the bench. At Anfield, he was off injured after 10 minutes and has not kicked a ball in anger since.

“Yes, unlike Declan Rice, for example, he would be available on a free transfer but this strikes me as a false economy. The simple fact that in the near six years of his second spell at United, the demands and intensity of the Premier League have proved too much for him.”

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