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Luke Shaw’s admission says everything about Paul Pogba’s importance to Man Utd

Luke Shaw claimed Manchester United were “awful” and only reached the Europa League quarter-finals thanks to the intervention of “world class” substitute Paul Pogba.

The French midfielder’s comeback goal early in the second half against AC Milan sealed United’s progress but Shaw was far from impressed.

Shaw, recalled to Gareth Southgate’s England squad, said: “We were not good at all – especially in the first half, we were awful.

“We turned off, we were very sloppy, kept giving the ball away and maybe we were lucky.

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“It was a bit better in the second half and it always helps when you have got a world class player like Paul to come on and make a difference.

“He did that and it is brilliant to have him back … but we know we need to be better than we were tonight.”

Manchester United's Paul Pogba celebrates scoring their first goal with Bruno Fernandes and Luke Shaw
United celebrate Paul Pogba’s winner in San Siro

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was not so harsh on his team after Pogba’s narrow-angled strike – in his first appearance since early February – gave United a 2-1 aggregate win.

The delighted United manager said: “We came through a difficult tie against a fantastic team.

“We have missed Paul (Pogba). He has been out for almost two months and he is very important for us.

“He could only do 45 minutes and he will get better and better and that is a big, big boost for us.”

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United are now hot favourites to win the Europa League but now turn their attention towards an FA Cup quarter-final at Leicester City on Sunday.

And Solskjaer is hoping Marcus Rashford, who made way for Pogba at half-time, will be available.

He said: “Marcus had a little twinge and we could not take risk with him but, hopefully, it will not be too bad.”

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