Paul Pogba is a “true leader” whose ability will be fully recognised at this World Cup, according to France goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.
The Manchester United midfielder has been one of France’s star performers in Russia as Les Bleus have progressed to the quarter-finals of the tournament.
Didier Deschamps has played the 25-year-old in a more advanced role than he usually adopts at United, with Pogba partnered by the more defensive-minded N’Golo Kante and Blaise Matuidi.
“I think he’s maturing, he’s growing,” said Tottenham goalkeeper Lloris said ahead of Friday’s quarter-final against Uruguay in Nizhny Novgorod.
“He’s accumulating experience, be it with Manchester United, Juventus – now he’s lining up more seasons, more caps. He’s starting to grow in the locker room also and that is a good thing because he’s a true leader.
“He’s a very ambitious player. We all know he’s extremely talented and he has a lot to offer the team and his team-mates.
“I think that these big competitions are also good to reveal the talent of players and I’m sure it’s going to be the case for Paul.”
Another player who has shone in Russia for France is 19-year-old Kylian Mbappe.
He announced himself on the world stage with two goals in the last-16 win over Argentina but Lloris is not concerned the Paris Saint-Germain forward will be affected by all the attention.
“He’s the same person,” added Lloris. “He’s true to himself, he smiles, he’s relaxed.
“I think he’s a player that has so much ambition, he has so much to offer his teams – be it PSG or France.
“He has a bright future ahead of him but I think he’s also very aware of the fact that when the opportunity knocks on the door you need to seize your opportunities.
“He’s doing everything he can to not miss his chance here. He’s ready to help the team. I think the entire world saw him shine against Argentina, but he’s very much focused.
“He stays true to his style and he still wants to enjoy himself together with his team-mates.”