Paul Pogba has been surprised by the reception Juventus has received in Australia and says Sunday’s clash with the Foxtel A-League All Stars is crucial to Juve’s Serie A title defence preparations.
On the eve of their clash with the All Stars on Sunday night, Pogba spoke about his future with the Bianconeri and how he feels he has grown since the World Cup with France.
The 21-year-old is part of a star-studded Juventus squad that took part in a special open training session at Kogarah Oval on Saturday afternoon, with more than 3000 fans turning out.
“I’m surprised still now to see a lot of fans here outside Europe that we didn’t know,” the midfielder told reporters.
“It’s very good for them when you come here because it’s hard for them to see the team in Australia because it’s quite far.
“But it’s good for us as well to see that we have a lot of fans outside Europe.
“For the coach and all the team it’s very important this game (against the All Stars) tomorrow.
“We have to be focused, we have to prepare for the championship and to get the team right.”
Pogba has emerged as one of Europe’s top midfielders over the last couple of seasons, helping Juve to three straight Scudetti.
He also won the Young Player of the Tournament in Brazil, putting him firmly on the radar of some of the world’s biggest clubs.
While he has a new offer on the table from Juve, Pogba insists his sole focus now is on the pitch and playing his part in the team’s world-class midfield.
“Like I said in Jakarta, I’m just focused on the pitch and on Juventus and doing great things on the pitch,” the former Manchester United player said.
“I haven’t spoken with any manager or with anyone about my contract so for me I’m just staying focused and training hard.
“My place (in the team) is going to be where the coach decides. I’m just training hard and try and help the team reach the maximum possible and that’s it.
“If I can create some goals that is a bonus but I have to work hard for the team, to defend and attack and if I can have the chances to score, I’m going to do this as well.”
Pogba said while Juve has a new coach in Massimiliano Allegri, the style that has made them so successful over the last few seasons wouldn’t change.
He is also hopeful the club will hold onto Chilean midfielder Arturo Vidal, who is being courted by his former club United.
“Of course, I hope he will stay,” Pogba said of Vidal.
“He’s injured at the moment and he’s trying to get fit. We want him to stay at Juventus. For the moment he is here so we won’t speak about him leaving.”The FOXTEL A-League All Stars play Juventus at ANZ Stadium, Sydney on Sundy evening with the match to be broadcast live and exclusive on the Seven Network's 7Mate channel nationally. Match Details FOXTEL A-League All Stars v Juventus FC Sunday 10 August 2014 ANZ Stadium, Sydney Kick-Off: 7:30 pm AEST Click here to buy your tickets online. To purchase over the phone, please call Ticketek on 132 849 or get your tickets from your local Ticket agency. Ticket Prices Category A - $169.50 all tickets Category B - $99.50 Adult, $59.50 Concession, $258.50 Family Category C - $59.50 Adult, $39.50 Concession, $158.50 Family Juventus Active Area - $59.50 Adult, $39.50 Concession Ticket Prices are inclusive of GST & Booking Fee. Transaction and credit card charges may apply. Ticket Price includes Public Transport, conditions apply. Broadcast Schedule Sydney 6.30pm LIVE on 7mate Melbourne 6.30pm LIVE on 7mate Brisbane 6.30pm LIVE on 7mate Adelaide 6pm LIVE on 7mate Perth 4.30pm LIVE on 7mate Brisbane 6.30pm LIVE on 7mate Hashtag: #ALvJUVE