When Paul Pogba sealed his second return to Juventus ahead of the 2022/23 campaign, the Frenchman perhaps didn’t feel there was a better place to enjoy a career resurgence.
His tumultuous spell with Manchester United eventually fell flat and he departed the club on a free transfer. The Old Lady had long flirted with buying into the #POGBACK phenomenon, but a move appeared financially unviable.
Turin was where Pogba developed into a superstar and Juventus had high hopes he’d help the Bianconeri return to the promised land having fallen from grace at the start of the 2020s.
“Paul is back in Turin. He left as a boy and returns as a man and a champion, but there is one thing that has not changed – the desire to write unforgettable pages of club history together once more,” Juve wrote to conclude a rather impassioned statement celebrating his return.
“Pogba is back and we couldn’t be happier.”
The atmosphere was initially fervent, but an injury-plagued debut campaign which was clouded by the club’s Plusvalenze scandal dampened spirits. After notching a single goal contribution in 161 minutes of action, many doubted it could get worse for Pogba in 2023/24, but he’s found a way.
The midfielder’s rebirth in Turin looks to have come to a shuddering halt after secondary analysis backed up initial findings regarding Pogba’s failed drug test in September. While a contract cancellation could be in the works, reports already suggest the player’s wages have been slashed drastically by Juventus.
Juventus provisionally suspended Pogba on 11 September after returning a doping test with unusually high levels of testosterone following the Bianconeri’s Serie A victory against Udinese in August.
Pogba requested for the sample to be analysed again in the hope there had been an error and that his name could be cleared, but the secondary analysis also returned a positive result. Thus, Pogba could now be subjected to a four-year ban and the cancellation of his Juventus contract.
Following his initial suspension, Pogba has been separated from the rest of the Juventus first-team squad and is unable to communicate with club staff. In addition, his salary has been cut to €42,177.
As per regulations when it comes to suspended players, Juve only have to pay Pogba the minimum wage laid out in the Collective Agreement with the Italian Association of Footballers.
When he signed for the club as a free agent two summers ago, Pogba emerged as one of Juve’s highest-paid players alongside Dusan Vlahovic and Wojciech Szczesny. However, he’s now earning just a minute proportion of salary which is believed to be worth in excess of €10m.
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