Solskjaer hails 'big performer' Pogba and claims Man Utd will keep him next season

OLE GUNNAR SOLSKJAER believes Paul Pogba is a big game player and will be at his best form for Manchester United in the highly-anticipated Champions League tie against Barcelona.

The Red Devils coach expects the French midfielder to "run the game" tonight and has ruled out a summer move away from Old Trafford.

Pogba has been in brilliant form since Solskjaer took over in December.

The Frenchman has scored nine goals and added seven assists since the Norwegian returned to Manchester, becoming one of the team's leaders.

His performances have caught the attention of Europe's best clubs, with Barcelona a long-term admirer of the midfielder.

And Real Madrid were expected to make a move for Pogba this summer as Zinedine Zidane is planning a major squad overhaul at the Bernabeu.

But Solskjaer believes the midfielder is a "big performer" and will be United's X factor in tonight's clash with Barcelona.

He is also confident Pogba will stay at Old Trafford beyond this season and continue to orchestrate matches for his team.

Solskjaer said: "Paul is looking forward to [tonight].

"He’s a Man United player. He’s one of our big performers and on a big stage.

"He knows the game against PSG was not his greatest moment.

"So, he is only focused on playing well against Barcelona and I cannot see him not playing for Man United next season either.

"It’s not about one player, everyone has to perform at their best level and at Paul’s best he can run a game like this, and that’s what you expect from him, that he really puts his stamp on a game like this.

"I expect Chris [Smalling] to defend really well but that’s his job. Paul’s job is to be the creator, and when we win the ball that he drives forward, so I expect him to perform tomorrow."

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