Paul Pogba Threatens Legal Action Over Fake Retirement Reports

Oct 26, 2020, 3:45 PM GMT
Paul Pogba
Paul Pogba has threatened legal action over reports he has retired from international duty | Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images

Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba has threatened legal action after reports were published suggesting he had retired from international duty as a protest over French president Emmanuel Macron's comments on Islam.

Macron attracted plenty of criticism for his public response following the murder of schoolteacher Samuel Paty, who was killed after showing his class images of the Prophet Muhammad.

Emmanuel Macron
Macron's comments have sparked fierce criticism | Thierry Monasse/Getty Images

Macron's comments on Islam in the wake of the tragic events prompted a highly unlikely report from little known Middle Eastern site 195sports, which suggested that Pogba had made a decision to quit the French team in protest.

That unverified 'story' as picked up and translated for an English audience by British tabloid The Sun, who cited 'Middle Eastern sources' when covering the situation.

The story obviously made its way to Pogba, who took to Instagram to blast The Sun and condemn the report in general for being fictitious and offensive.

"So The Sun did again... absolutely 100% unfounded news about me is going around, stating things I have never said or thought," he wrote. "I am appalled, angry, shocked and frustrated some 'media' sources use me to make total fake headlines in the sensible subject of French current events and adding my religion and the French National Team to the pot.

"I am against any and all forms of terror and violence. My religion is one of peace and love and must be respected.

"Unfortunately, some press people don’t act responsibly when writing the news, abusing their press freedom, not verifying if what they write/reproduce is true, creating a gossip chain without caring it affects people’s lives and my life. I am taking legal action against the publishers and spreaders of this 100% Fake News.

Paul Pogba
Pogba is a core part of the France setup | Aurelien Meunier/Getty Images

"In a quick shout out to The Sun, who normally could not care less: some of you guys probably went to school and will remember how your teacher said to always check your sources, don’t write without making sure. But hey, seems you did it again and on a very serious topic this time, shame on you!"

The United midfielder has earned 71 caps for France and remains a core part of Didier Deschamps' side, featuring in all three of Les Bleus' games during the latest international break.

For more from ​Tom Gott, follow him on ​Twitter!