France head coach Didier Deschamps says Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba needs regular game time to rediscover his best form after a spell on the sidelines.
Pogba missed 10 games for United after sustaining a hamstring injury in February, but returned to action this month and helped the Premier League side reach the Europa League quarter-finals with the winning goal in a 1-0 victory at AC Milan.
He also came off the bench in France’s 1-1 draw with Ukraine in their 2022 World Cup Qualifier on Wednesday and is expected to feature against Kazakhstan later on Sunday.
“He is not on top of his game, that’s for sure,” Deschamps said. “When he came off the bench against Ukraine, we were not having our best moment. But obviously, those 30 minutes were good for him.
“Like every player that comes back from injury, he needs time. He was in this situation in November, he came with not a lot of minutes and played one hour against Finland which was not that good, but it didn’t stop him from having a great game against Portugal after that.
“He is capable of playing from the start but also coming in during the game. But he needs to play minutes in order to get fit again.”
After their game at Kazakhstan, France travel to Bosnia on Wednesday.
Road to Qatar: England, Scotland, France, Spain in action
The road to Qatar for European countries continues on Sunday with more World Cup Qualifiers involving England, Scotland, France and Spain.
France kicked off their World Cup qualifying campaign in unconvincing fashion as they were held to a 1-1 home draw by Ukraine on Wednesday – and Didier Deschamps’ team will look to bounce back on an artificial pitch in Kazakhstan.
Germany, England and Italy got off to winning starts but Spain were held to a 1-1 home draw by Greece. That quartet also return to action as part of a bumper Sunday where 15 European Qualifiers take place.
All of Sunday’s World Cup European Qualifiers are being shown live on either Sky Sports Football, Main Event, Premier League, or on the red button.
Not only that, but you can also watch in-game clips and free match highlights on Sky Sports’ digital platforms via our dedicated live blog.
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