Paul Pogba will discover on Monday whether he is facing an extended ban for applauding after being sent off against Arsenal, although the fact that he was walking away from referee Andre Marriner is expected to discourage the Football Association from issuing any charge.
The FA will wait for Marriner’s report before deciding whether further action is necessary on top of the usual three-game ban for a straight red but the fact that there is some doubt over the context of Pogba’s clapping could be significant.
The United midfielder may say that it was not sarcastic or meant in protest at Marriner’s decision but rather aimed in appreciation of the away fans.
United manager Jose Mourinho has already suggested that Pogba was disappointed at how his France team-mate Laurent Koscielny seemed to lobby for the dismissal.
Pogba did not speak to reporters as he left the Emirates on Saturday but he did stop to explain what had happened to Mourinho and a group of former players, including Thierry Henry and William Gallas.
In the discussion, Pogba was demonstrating how Hector Bellerin had made such an unusual attempt to block the ball with the back of his leg and Mourinho was adamant that the incident was entirely accidental.
As it is, Pogba is set to miss the Manchester derby at Old Trafford next Sunday and then the matches against Bournemouth and West Bromwich Albion. Pogba had been outstanding up until his dismissal, helping to create both the first and third goals.
“He is very frustrated because everyone knows Paul is a clean player and it was not his intention at all to be close to a red card,” said Mourinho. Arsene Wenger was unhappy that Marriner missed two convincing penalty appeals for Arsenal and again complained at the standard of referring in England.