Pogba could pay penalty for poor spot-kick record

The Manchester United midfielder was denied by Rui Patricio on Monday night.

By Press Association Published: 20 August 2019 - 12.16pm

Paul Pogba’s days as Manchester United’s penalty taker ought to be numbered if his statistics are anything to go by.

The Frenchman’s latest miss proved costly on Monday night as United were held to a 1-1 draw at Wolves, with Pogba seeing his 68th-minute spot-kick saved by Rui Patricio.

Pogba only took the penalty after an argument with team-mate Marcus Rashford, who scored from the spot for the first time in the Premier League against Chelsea last weekend and is yet to miss a spot-kick in his professional career.

Premier League penalty conversion rates
Premier League penalty conversion rates (PA Graphics)

Gary Neville branded the apparent confusion over who should take the penalty “embarrassing”, saying on Sky Sports: “This is a Manchester United penalty, this is not a tombola, this is not under-fives on a school field.”

Neville pointed to Rashford’s success last week and, despite his relative inexperience, the England man might have a better claim to be taking United’s spot-kicks given that Pogba ranks among the worst regular Premier League penalty takers.

After his three misses out of 10 attempts last season, Pogba now has a conversion rate of 63.6 per cent in the Premier League.

Of the 14 current players to have taken at least 10 penalties in the league, only Manchester City’s Riyah Mahrez has a worse return rate, having scored seven of the 12 (58.3 per cent) he has taken.

percentage of Premier League penalties converted by Paul Pogba

Everton’s Leighton Baines, now largely a back-up to Lucas Digne but in line to start against Aston Villa next weekend following an injury to the Frenchman, has the best success rate, having scored 20 of his 22 (90.9 per cent) Premier League penalties.

Crystal Palace midfielder Luka Milivojevic is just behind, having scored 19 of his 21 penalties (90.5 per cent).

Pogba is the only current United player to have taken more than 10 Premier League penalties.