Paul Pogba believes Abou Diaby has more ability than himself and includes the former Arsenal man on a list of midfielders that are better than him.
Diaby showed flashes of brilliance during his nine-year spell at Arsenal and was hailed as the ‘new Patrick Vieira’ due to his similarities with the Gunners legend.
But a series of injury problems, which began with a horror tackle by Sunderland’s Dan Smith back in May 2006, eventually derailed Diaby’s career. The 32-year-old is currently without a club after Marseille released him last year.
Paul Pogba (left) believes ex-Arsenal man Abou Diaby (right) is a better midfielder than him
And despite Diaby’s injury-ravaged career, Pogba listed his compatriot as one of the midfielders with more ability than himself.
Asked by Canal Plus which midfielders are better than him in football, Pogba said ‘There is Andres Iniesta, who is having an amazing career.
‘Luka Modric, Toni Kroos, David Silva, Kevin De Bruyne, Yaya Toure even Diaby. Box-to-box, he was exceptional but unfortunately he had a lot of injuries.
Pogba has endured an inconsistent second season back at Manchester United in 2017-18
Kevin De Bruyne (left) and David Silva (right) were also included on Pogba’s list to Canal Plus
‘Look at him when he was he was at Arsenal – he was exceptional. People forget about him. In the France team, he was enormous. I’ve got a lot of respect for him. I won’t forget him, I learned a lot from him.’
Despite his brutal series of injuries, Diaby managed to win 16 international caps for France and featured at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
During his nine-year spell at Arsenal between 2005 and 2016 the midfielder managed less than 14 Premier League appearances per season.
Pogba has endured an inconsistent season at Manchester United and manager Jose Mourinho is willing to let the club-record £89million signing leave this summer.
Diaby won 16 caps for France despite his injury problems and played at the 2010 World Cup
Pogba (with Kylian Mbappe) is currently with the France team ahead of Monday’s friendly
Mourinho has run out of patience with the club’s record signing and has included Pogba on a list of players who can be sold as he attempts to close the gap on rivals and Premier League champions Manchester City.
Pogba is currently away with the French national team as they prepare for Monday night’s friendly clash with the Republic of Ireland.
France have been drawn into Group C in Russia at the 2018 World Cup, alongside Australia, Denmark and Peru, 20 years on from their 1998 triumph on home soil.