Paul Pogba could be back from injury sooner than expected. The French midfielder could return to training with Juventus within the next week according to L'Equipe. After moving back to Juventus from Manchester United during the summer, Pogba has yet to make an appearance for the club this season due to being sidelined with a knee injury that might have seen him miss the World Cup for France, but things could be looking up for club and country.
Pogba is not only a crucial man for France, but is desperately needed at Juventus as well. The team will need help to qualify for the knockout rounds of Champions League play, they trail both Benfica and PSG in their group and manager Max Allegri can't get enough out of his attack or defense. The struggles at Juventus aren't confined to European play either. The team currently currently sit eighth in Serie A, eight points off of a Champions League spot, so slotting a player of Pogba's quality into matches will go a long way to helping Allegri and the squad turn things around.
Despite not playing consistently for Manchester United, there's no denying Pogba's impact when he's on the pitch. Pogba had one goal and nine assists in about 1400 Premier League minutes last season. In Serie A play, Filip Kostic is the only Juventus player with more than one assist -- and he only has two. The attack is stale and too predictable, and Pogba's creativity could change that. Juventus will have to take things slow with the midfielder when he returns, but any minutes he can give them would be quite a boost.
Allegri won't be the only manager watching Pogba's fitness as Didier Deschamps also needs Pogba for the France midfield. N'Golo Kante is now a doubt for the World Cup after re-aggravating his hamstring injury, an injury which could reportedly sideline him for three months. Les Bleus have only won one of their last six matches while Deschamps has been trying to find the right balance to spark his team. Realistically, only so much can be gleaned from the Nations League matches that France has struggled in and some degree of player rotation has been necessary due to how many minutes soccer players are logging this season. But these challenges of winning with tired legs will also be present at the World Cup.
A relatively fresh Pogba could be a game changer if he's healthy enough to contribute. A healthy Pogba could serve as a bridge between the his World Cup winning midfield partners of France's last generation of talent like Blaise Matuidi and Kante and a new generation going to Qatar. Eduardo Camivinga and Aurélien Tchouaméni are incredibly talented young midfielders who are both thriving at Real Madrid but having a talented player with more experience next to them, serving in a role like like Luka Modric and Toni Kroos do that club level, will help elevate them.
Pogba will need to prove that he's healthy to contribute for club and country but if he can, there's certainly a big role for him to play. Just the hope of a Pogba return will hopefully be enough to spark Juventus in the short term with a long term view to helping France.