The Frenchman has expressed his delight after reuniting with his compatriot at club level while outlining his goals for the 2021-22 season
Raphael Varane says he is “very happy” to have linked up with Paul Pogba at Manchester United, with the £40 million ($55m) defender “ready to work hard” to deliver silverware at Old Trafford.
United spent £40 million ($55m) to bring in Varane from Real Madrid this summer, officially presenting the 28-year-old to supporters before their opening Premier League fixture against Leeds on Saturday.
Varane’s arrival seemed to give the whole team a lift as they ran out 5-1 winners, with four of the goals set up by Pogba, who he is looking forward to playing with at club level after many years of success on the international stage.
What’s been said?
The pair helped France reach the Euro 2016 final before playing key roles in their run to World Cup glory in Russia two years later, and Varane is hopeful their shared desire for success will help the Red Devils bring a four-year trophy drought to an end in 2021-22.
Speaking in his first in-house interview as a United player, the centre-back said of his relationship with Pogba: “I’m very happy. I’ve known him for a very long time, we started together with the French national team and he’s a great player. I think he’s ambitious and me too, so we are ready to work hard and to do all we can to win trophies.”
Varane added on Pogba’s larger-than-life character: “I think Paul is very positive and he has a very good energy; he motivates players in the dressing room and on the pitch with his energy.
“We are different but we are very complementary, and it’s important in the team to have different types of leaders and characters.”
Why did Varane choose United?
Varane went on to explain why he chose to leave Real and take up a new challenge in the Premier League after a trophy-laden 10-year spell at Santiago Bernabeu.
“I think it was a good moment because of a lot of things, but I think the most important one is it’s a new challenge and it’s a big motivation to start in a new league in a big club like Manchester United,” he said.
“This opportunity was amazing for me, so I chose this change for me and my family. They have come with me. You feel when things are a good moment and this was the right moment.”
Varane’s Old Trafford role models
Varane, who won three La Liga titles and five Champions Leagues during his time at Real, was also asked which former Red Devils stars he looked up to earlier in his career: “Of course, [Nemanja] Vidic and [Rio] Ferdinand were legends.
“I remember players like Cristiano [Ronaldo], [Ryan] Giggs and [David] Beckham also. They are legends and I’m very proud to be part of this family.”