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Paul Pogba commands higher wages than Hazard and Oscar combined -- reports

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This may be nothing more than a footnote, as Chelsea don't appear to be any closer to signing Paul Pogba than we were a week ago — and we weren't exactly close then either! — but if the latest missives of the English tabloids are to be believed, Pogba would want Chelsea to at least match the contract offer that he had been promised by Barcelona for next summer.

Now, we should keep in mind that these are "EXCLUSIVE" rumors from the pages of the Express and the Star, so not exactly high on the trustworthiness scale (they claim the same story as exclusive, for added laughs).  But in a way, the demands seem reasonable enough.  In many ways, they are entirely unreasonable of course, but as the man, whose opinions about football I trust more often than anyone else's once told me, "we should sign Pogba at any cost."  These demands certainly qualify as "any cost."

The supposed Barcelona pre-agreement, handshake deal, promises-promises-never-had-a-doubt or whatever it may be has apparently set Pogba's annual salary at £8.8m.  As we mentioned when talking about our rejected offer, that's a net amount: a net amount of just under £170k p/w.  In England however, wages get reported in gross figures (i.e. before tax), which would mean a weekly wage of £318k for the midfielder.  By contrast, to the best of our knowledge, we pay Eden Hazard and Oscar a combined £300k per week.  The total financial commitment to Pogba, as the tabloids have helpfully summed it up, would be £82m.  And that's before we consider that a transfer fee approaching a similar amount would have to be paid to Juventus in the first place.  And here we thought the £50m (fee) + £50m (wages) committed to Fernando Torres was a lot!

Then again, "any cost."  Any cost!  Any cost.  Draw your knees up.  Lie down.  Maybe not in that order.  Curl up in the fetal position.  Any cost.  Rock gently back and forth.  Please please please.  ANY COST!