The manager took issue with the discussion surrounding the France global and instead extolled the virtues of Scott McTominay, but he added Pogba made a "big effort" to meet the requirements he placed on the team.
Manchester United legend Ferdinand, watching the last-16 clash in the BT Sport studio, was nearly in disbelief at De Gea's latest effort.
18 months into the Jose Mourinho's reign at Old Trafford and any suggestions that the Portuguese manager would bring about a resurgence of the "United way" seem a long way away.
This wasn't a Mourinho bus-parking masterclass.
In the Champions League this season, De Gea has kept out 95.5 per cent of the shots he has faced, which is more than any other keeper in the competition with 10 or more saves to their name. The Sevilla man even acknowledged the fact that it was a good save - followed De Gea into the tunnel at halftime to congratulate him.
As Mortgage Rates Flatten, Markets Anticipate Federal Reserve Speeches
Asian stocks outside of Japan declined Thursday as the threat of faster pace of USA rate increases damped demand for equities. The minutes provide insights into the thinking of Fed officials and clues about the path of interest rates.
United didn't so much soak up pressure as let it wash through them. To me they're still rebuilding.
Given United's performance, Mourinho's assessment was correct.
As it is, United looked directionless, as have too often this season.
"Sometimes it can't be pretty and it can't always be free-flowing".
Another notable performance from the Chilean though he does not have a goal or an assist to show for it. Sanchez carved out a peach of a ball that could have potentially set up Lukaku's goal in the first half.
World's largest brain tumour removed in Mumbai hospital
Mr Pal, a shopkeeper from the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, had watched the tumour grow for three years. The part of the tumor within the skull was removed by making an opening in the skull", Nadkarni said.
"When he first came, as players we were sitting there with doubts really - 'We need to win every year, how are we going to do that with a young kid, inexperienced, who looks like he's lacking confidence?'", Ferdinand said.
As it happened, Pogba was named on the bench with Ander Herrera, Scott McTominay and Nemanja Matic chosen to start in central midfield.
The Spaniard was at his commanding best and made vital saves to allow United to scrape a 0-0 draw in southern Spain.
De Gea was not a darling of the Man United faithful when he signed.
United are favourites to progress to the quarter-finals but if Mourinho doesn't formulate a concrete strategy and relay that to the squad, one of Europe's top dogs could embarrass them over two legs.
(Olympics) Dutch skater, delegation apologize for remark on Korea's treatment of dogs
The Canadian women came just a hair behind the United States in the bronze medal race of women's team pursuit speed skating. Before the Olympics, Vonn said she would turn down an invitation to visit the White House if she wins a gold medal.
De Gea made one good early save low down to deny Colombian Muriel, while Jesus Navas, impressive at right-back, fired just wide after latching onto Ever Banega's cross-field pass.