Pogba brothers ready for Europa League duel as Manchester United host St Etienne

By dsguser
16 February 2017

Paul Pogba and Florentin Pogba go head-to-head in a "magical" encounter that the St Etienne defender will mark by stepping out at Old Trafford with his brother's number cut into his hair.

Anticipation has built since the Europa League last-32 draw pitted the world's most expensive player against his older brother.

The siblings have come a long way from the artificial pitches of Roissy-en-Brie in the Parisian suburbs and Florentin will celebrate the occasion with the kind of haircut the Manchester United midfielder would be proud of.

A bleached number 19, the St Etienne defender's squad number, has been cut into his hair, with Paul's number, six, crafted into the other side for Thursday's first leg.

"The 19 is my squad number and the six is for him," Florentin said of the first leg. "It's going to be a magical moment and I hope he and I enjoy it the best we can.

"No anguish at all, absolute excitement for me. No worries at all. It's all positive.

"I'm really passionate about the game and I cannot wait to play in this historic stadium and to play against my little brother, so it'll be fun."

The 26-year-old hopes the last-32 tie goes the same way as the table tennis matches between the pair as St Etienne look to secure a shock result in Manchester.

Their mother, Yeo, will be at the first leg and next Wednesday's return fixture in France, enjoying the "one-off" occasion to the maximum.

"Mum's going to be here," said Florentin, whose twin brother, Mathias, plays for Sparta Rotterdam after time with Wrexham, Crewe, Pescara, Crawley and Partick.

"Obviously these things don't happen very often in a player's career, the chance to see her two sons playing against each other, so she'll be here and at the return leg too.

"She can't lose really, can she? So it's going to be a fantastic night for her and a moment of real joy that she will enjoy watching both of her boys play."

Phil Jones is injured while Wayne Rooney and Michael Carrick will not be risked against St Etienne, but United manager Jose Mourinho plans to name a strong team for the first leg - and risk the wrath of his player's mum.

"I think it is a good, nice destiny," Mourinho said of the brotherly duel.

"I think only mum Pogba is a little bit in trouble, which is normal. It's difficult for the lady to choose - it's not difficult, it's impossible!

"I know from Paul that the mum wants a draw, but next week one son will be happy and another one will be sad.

"But I think for the mum it's a bit of a problem, but they will enjoy playing against each other.

"Paul is excited, Florentin for sure the same. I think it's a good thing."

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