Pogba, De Gea and Others Whose Careers Nosedived After Leaving Man Utd After Lingard Joined FC Seoul

Pogba, De Gea and Others Whose Careers Nosedived After Leaving Man Utd After Lingard Joined FC Seoul

Elijah Odetokun
updated at February 8, 2024 at 3:11 PM
In this article:
Paul Pogba logo
P. Pogba
Juventus logoMFrance logo
Edinson Cavani logo
Boca Juniors logoFUruguay logo
Jesse Lingard logo
J. Lingard
Football Club Seoul logoMEngland logo
David De Gea logo
-GSpain logo
James Michael Weir logo
J. Weir
FC ViOn Zlate Moravce-Vrable logoMEngland logo
Daniel James logo
Leeds United logoFWales logo
Manchester United logo
Manchester United
  • Jesse Lingard has joined FC Seoul over a year after leaving Manchester United
  • He briefly played for Nottingham Forest but was released after one season
  • Some players have left Old Trafford, and their careers never remained the same

Manchester United, in the past six years, have been different from the club it used to be, with them struggling to keep up with their big status among elite European clubs.

Despite the struggles on the pitch, some players would wish their careers turned out better than during their time at Old Trafford, as they did not find it easier after leaving.

Paul Pogba, Manchester United, Jesse Lingard, Liverpool, Anfield.
Paul Pogba replaced by Jesse Lingard in what turned out to be the Frenchman's final game for the club. Photo by Chris Brunskill.
Source: Getty Images

Sports Brief looks at players whose careers took strange turns after leaving United.

Ex-Man Utd players who went down

1. Paul Pogba

Pogba joined United for a world record £93 million transfer from Juventus in 2016. His six years at the club did not justify the price tag, and he returned to Turin on a free transfer. Per SportBible, he insulted the fans on his way out, claiming they don't understand football.

He tested positive for high levels of testosterone and is awaiting a verdict where he could be given a lengthy ban from football.

2. Jesse Lingard

The English winger did not enjoy a great time close to the end of his stay at the club, but it has worsened since leaving. A loan at West Ham in 2021 looked like it would revitalise his career, but a permanent move never materialised. He signed for K League club FC Seoul earlier today.

3. David De Gea

The Spanish goalkeeper spent 12 years as United’s first choice before he was let go at the end of his contract last season. He has remained without a club since then despite having multiple offers. Per Football365, Newcastle United attempted to sign him in January, but he turned them down.

4. David James

The Welsh winger joined United from Swansea in 2019. Two years later, he sealed a permanent move to Leeds United and was relegated with the club at the end of last season. A bright prospect playing in the Championship is not an upward trajectory for him.

5. James Weir

The midfielder came through United's academy at Carrington. He debuted as a stoppage-time substitute in the 3-2 win over Arsenal in 2016. He was offered a new contract but opted to join Hull City. He announced his professional retirement on his Instagram page two days ago at 28.

6. Edinson Cavani

Fair to him, the career never peaked at Old Trafford. The veteran forward spent two years before heading for Spanish club Valencia in 2022. He moved again after a season and currently plays for Boca Juniors in Argentina.

Ronaldo reacts to Man Utd wish

Sports Brief reported on Cristiano Ronaldo reacting to United's wish on his 39th birthday despite the acrimonious end to their relationship in November 2022.

Ronaldo has grown better since leaving, proving that his dip in form at Old Trafford was a one-off. He finished 2023 as football’s highest goal scorer with 54.

Elijah Odetokun photo
Elijah Odetokun
Elijah Odetokun is Reuters-trained journalist with three years of experience having previously worked at Daily Times Nigeria, OmaSports and El Futbolero.