French midfielder Paul Pogba’s playing days are potentially over as Italian prosecutors recommend a lengthy doping suspension that could end his top-level soccer career.
After testing positive for a banned substance, Pogba may be banned from competition for four years if the court upholds the prosecution’s penalty request.
Pogba, 30, provided a sample after a Juventus match in August that showed traces of DHEA, a hormone that boosts testosterone levels. As a banned performance-enhancing drug, its detection triggered an automatic provisional suspension for the 2018 World Cup winner. Pogba claimed the substance entered his body accidentally through supplements during his rehab from injury.
However, further analysis of a second sample confirmed the initial positive test. Facing a mandatory four-year ban under anti-doping rules, Pogba argued mitigating factors deserved leniency. Nonetheless, Italian authorities remain unmoved, demanding the maximum penalty at his upcoming hearing despite Pogba’s injury comeback attempts.
Unless a compromise can reduce his sentence, Pogba faces legal fallout alongside the likely termination of his Juventus contract running until 2026 due to the contract breach. After over a decade playing in England and Italy, the ban threatens to prematurely end Pogba’s decorated professional soccer career at its peak. As the case develops, Pogba’s fate and legacy remaining in doubt.