Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba facing four-year ban after failing drug test

Paul Pogba of Juventus FC looks on during the Serie A Tim match between Empoli FC and Juventus FC at Stadio Carlo Castellani on September 3, 2023 in Empoli, Italy. (Photo by Giuseppe Maffia/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Paul Pogba of Juventus has been provisionally suspended after testing positive for artificial testosterone. (Photo by Giuseppe Maffia/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba has been provisionally suspended after failing a drug test, Italian anti-doping agency Nado Italia announced on Monday via the Associated Press.

Pogba tested positive for testosterone that was not produced by his own body. The test was administered on Aug. 20 following Juventus’ 3-0 win over Udinese. Pogba was an unused sub and did not play.

This failed drug test is just the latest development in what has been a disastrous reunion between Pogba and Juventus. In July 2022 Pogba left Manchester United, where he’d played for the last six years, and signed a four-year contract to play for Juventus, the team he played for from 2012 to 2016. It was an attempt to prove that he’s still one of the most talented players in the game, and thus far it has backfired spectacularly. Since he arrived he’s played just over 160 minutes, with a meniscus injury and various muscle issues limiting his time.

Pogba, 30, has experienced far more success in his career than he’s been seeing lately. Born in France, Pogba has played for the French national team since 2013, and helped them win the World Cup in 2018. During his first stint with Juventus, he helped them win two Serie A titles and break their 12-year UEFA Champions League Final drought, and also earned numerous individual performance awards. His success with Juventus is why his signing with Manchester United in 2016 broke records for the highest transfer fee paid at that time. But things have changed quite a bit since then.

Now that Pogba has been provisionally suspended, he next step in the process is additional testing. Pogba has three days to request that his “B” sample be drug tested. If the result of that test confirms the presence of artificial testosterone, Italian sports publication SportsMediaset reported Pogba could face a ban of up to two years, which could turn into a four years if Nado Italia can prove Pogba took the testosterone intentionally.

Neither Pogba, Juventus, or Serie A have commented about the positive test.

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