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Name Paul Scholes
Gender Male
Birthplace Salford
Born 1974 11 16
Nationality UK
Ethnic English
Job English Footballer
Desc His numbers are simply extraordinary. 499 Premier League appearances. 107 goals. Eleven league titles. One of Fergie’s Fledglings, Scholes developed into one of the finest midfielders in the world, renowned for his crisp passing, intelligent movement and eye for goal. Xavi famously remarked that Scholes was a ‘spectacular player who has everything’, while Pele once commented: ‘If he was playing with me, I would have scored so many more’

Affiliation

Org English National Team
Club as Player Manchester United
Owner Salford City

Relationship

Teammate Ryan Giggs
  Roy Keane
  xxxx
Coach Alex Fergusson
Mentor Mike Coffey
Hero Frankie Bunn
  Andy Ritchie
  Stuart Balmer

Education

High School Cardinal Langley High School

Notes

Salford City Gary Neville, along with his brother Phil, Ryan Giggs, Nicky Butt and Paul Scholes is a co-owner of Salford City
Stuart Balmer The Scot who played for Oldham for two seasons at the start of the decade and is now first-team coach at St Mirren
Andy Ritchie Oldham striking legend who scored 82 goals for the club between 1987 and 1995, as well as later managing the side
Frankie Bunn Oldham striker whose claim to fame was scoring six goals in the 7-0 League Cup win over Scarborough in 1989
1991 07 08
Paul Scholes joins Manchester United
1994 09 21
Paul Scholes debuts for Manchester United

2004 08 03 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes retires from international football. Scholes, 29, who won the last of his 66 caps in England’s Euro 2004 defeat against Portugal, admitted he had thought long and hard about retiring] This is a decision I have not taken lightly. I have been considering retiring from international football for a while now

I started my international career in 1997 and have enjoyed seven years of great football, playing in the best competitions, with some of the best players under the best managers

Euro 2004 was fantastic but afterwards I felt the time was right for myself and my family to make it my last England appearance. I would like to thank everyone at England for the wonderful years I had playing for the team and all the experience I gained. I wish them all the best and good luck for the future

2008 07 24 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes says When he go he will miss football, not the life of a footballer] How long will I go on? I’d think two years at the most. I have one year left on my contract and, hopefully, I’ll get another one, but I suppose it all depends on how you’re feeling and how you’re playing

I can’t say that I can’t wait to finish, but I am looking forward to finishing being involved with everything that goes with it. I suppose people are just very invasive and are always wanting to know what you’re going to do. The only thing I will definitely miss is the football, not the general life of a footballer

At the moment, though, I just think two years would be about right. I feel OK right now and as long as I feel OK then I’ll carry on

It’s difficult to say whether I want to bow out at the top [with United] or not. I’ll just have to see, when the time comes, whether I want to carry on playing somewhere else at a lower level. But I don’t look that far ahead

[Moscow secured redemption, but Scholes admits that he and United should not have waited quite so long to get their hands on the European Cup once more] Moscow meant everything. It was a great night to win probably the biggest trophy in club football. Maybe we were a bit lucky towards the end, but I was always hopeful we’d win it again

When you’ve got a team like we have, especially one playing as well as we were doing in the last year, I always thought there would be a chance and luckily we did it

But I don’t think it matters how much you win because, as soon as you win it, the day after you look forward and try and win it again. I would have liked to have won it more, or even just got to the final a bit more. Hopefully, we can do better this time than we did after 1999, when we had to wait another nine years

I don’t have my medals on show, though. They’re just locked away somewhere. I got a medal in 1999, but I don’t view myself as a double Champions League winner. You’ve got to play in the final for it to count

[Scholes says he does not see the appeal of trading United for another club] If other players fancy a move and a bit of money, then good luck to them. But if they’re at a place like this [United], I don’t think they realise how lucky they are to be playing here

It’s always a step down after here. There are obviously big clubs in the world, but while certain people think it might be a progression if they move somewhere else, when you leave here, I don’t think it is. I’ve had everything I need. I’m at Manchester United and I’m from Manchester, so what more do I need?

2011 05 31
Manchester United midfielder Paul Scholes announced his retirement from all football. He came out of retirement in January 2012 and later penned a one-year deal to continue his United career, before retiring again at the end of the 2012/13 season.
2013 05 19
Paul Scholes lefts Manchester United

2014 05 22 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes says Van Gaal must make Kroos his first Manchester United signing] The first player I’d bring in is Toni Kroos. The first player I’d bring in is Toni Kroos. Edward Woodward has an awful lot to prove this time that he’s good enough at his job. He has to bring the players in that the new manager wants. It’s obvious that last year he didn’t manage to do that. If he doesn’t, we are not going to get anywhere near the top

2014 12 10 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes on Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona] Playing against Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona could be a soul-destroying experience. But now they are a ghost of the side they had once been. They still pass the ball relentlessly, but that old drive and tempo are not nearly as urgent. The breathtaking speed and penetration have gone. When I try to find a way of summarising the attitude of the team, and of some longer-serving individuals, I keep alighting on the word ‘bored’. As for Messi, his achievements put him in a different category to the rest of us who played the game. But even so, in him, as much as anyone, I detected that mood of boredom. He has never been a player given to chasing the full-back when his team lose the ball, but now, more than ever, he keeps his movement to an absolute minimum

2015 01 03 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes on Steven Gerrard] It’s difficult for me, as a United fan, to say it’s a pity that Gerrard has never won the league. It is easier to say he deserves to have a league winners’ medal

2015 05 14 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes on Steven Gerrard’s final game at Stamford Bridge] I was glad that the Chelsea fans applauded Gerrard. It was just for a few seconds, but it did show that as fans we can look beyond our club rivalries when necessary. I don’t think it ever happened to me. Maybe when I got substituted at my testimonial! As a season-ticket holder in the Stretford End, I would have applauded Steven off the pitch – albeit just the once. There would have been a few in the seats around me who would object. But just as many who would have done the same

2015 08 20 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes on Thierry Henry] On his day he was absolutely scintillating, a supreme athlete and a magnificent footballer. What amazed me was that he never seemed to get a sweat on. He could run 100 meters past five players and he wouldn’t even be breathing heavily

2015 08 23 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes on Manchester United] There’s a real lack of excitement, a lack of quality more than anything. Newcastle at home, you should be beating them. If you’re going to win the league, you need to be winning these types of games

2015 11 28 Retrieve

[on Roy Keane] Roy was unbelievable to play alongside and someone you could always trust. I soon learned that if you weren’t on your game he would be on top of you to make sure you were playing your part for the team. I had a few bollockings from him, but that made you work harder to avoid them. He was a great leader and captain: he drove us on and he was our manager on the pitch

2016 02 18 Retrieve

[on Nemanja Vidic of Manchester United] Take it from me, Vida is one very hard lad. Sometimes you might hear criticism of foreign players who might have plenty of fancy tricks on the ball, but throw them into battle on a freezing wet February night at Bolton, or Stoke, or Blackburn, and they just don’t fancy it. Well, Vida does fancy it, no matter how tough the assignment. He relishes the physical challenge of the game, the heading, the tackling, the getting in against fearsome opponents when the chips are down. It took him a little while to settle when he arrived in Manchester, but soon he proved himself to be top quality, not only as a warrior, but also in his use of the ball. Vida is a natural for the role of captain, leading from the front

2016 02 19 Retrieve

[on Nemanja Vidic of Manchester United] It might surprise you to hear that Nemanja, who arrived from Spartak Moscow, was not the powerful centre-back he became over his years with the club. There was nothing of him when he arrived. He was skinny and relatively easy to push off the ball. [. . .] he took a battering in his first few weeks at the club – in training as well as matches. [. . .]

Nemanja must have realised quite early on that he was not strong enough to play in the centre of defence at that time, so he did something about it. For the next year, every time I walked past the gym, I would see Nemanja in there lifting weights. He turned himself into a big, strong centre-half who was capable of knocking strikers out of the way. He always had a great ability to head the ball, but allied with his strength he became unbeatable in the air.

Throughout his United career, we would play away at difficult grounds and it would be Nemanja heading crosses and set pieces when the team were under pressure. In training, he was different. He always fancied himself as a No 10, and he was a very skilful individual. It was a shame that his injuries got the better of him at the end of his time at Old Trafford

2016 02 20 Retrieve

[on Rio Ferdinand] He was a great player, without a doubt the best centre-half I ever played with. I would say for a time as well he was the best centre-half in the world. He was such a pleasure to play with and play in front of. To play in front of him, he made your job so easy

2016 09 09 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes says he prefers watching non-league Salford than the Premier League] I probably do enjoy watching Salford more. I don’t know if it’s as much that I don’t like the hassle of going to the game, getting in, sitting in traffic. Going to Salford, I park up behind the goal and get out of my car. But I genuinely get more enjoyment from watching even my son’s team, Royter Town. I don’t find elite football as interesting to watch any more, especially in England

In the Premier League in the last two years, have I really seen a game of high quality? A game that I’ve thought ‘Wow!’ It’s difficult to think of any. You hear about people saying English football’s the best football there is around. I think Spain’s by far the best league. Germany has better teams. In Italy probably the strength in depth isn’t great

2016 09 11 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes wrote in a new book] I don’t know if it’s as much that I don’t like the hassle of going to the game, getting in, sitting in traffic. Going to Salford City, I park up behind the goal and get out of my car. But I genuinely get more enjoyment from watching even my son’s team, Royter Town. I don’t find elite football as interesting to watch any more, especially in England

2016 11 05 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes talks about his club’s disappointing start to the season] It’s been quite a painful three years really. And I think probably the next 18 months to two years could be very similar. Until this manager has three or four transfer windows to get a team that he wants, I think this team in two years will be unrecognisable from what it is now, but whatever we do in this two years has to be a bonus. They’ve shown in the last three years that they’re not capable of winning the league with this squad

2017 02 18 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes praises Real Madrid’s Toni Kroos] I really like Toni Kroos. When I neared the end of my career, I followed him closely and tried to play like Kroos. I was a midfielder with an eye for the goal, but Kroos is one of the best midfield masterminds in the world. Kroos would be perfect at United next to Paul Pogba and Ander Herrera

2017 04 22 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes thinks Marcus Rashford can reach the heights Neymar and Cristiano Ronaldo have reached] I am just a little bit worried that he is so quick he may get shoved out wide, which is not a bad thing. You look at Cristiano Ronaldo’s record and players like Neymar, he has that kind of ability. It is a lot to live up to but he has that in him. He can be a world star

2018 11 17 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes tells that current champions City could mimic Arsenal’s Invincibles and remain unbeaten in the league] We’ve talked about the Arsenal team that went right through the season without losing a game and the more you look at the City team, I don’t see where they are going to get beat

2019 04 29 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes on Daley Blind and Marcos Rojo] To win games of football with Blind and [Marcos] Rojo at centre-half, [Manchester United] almost need to score three goals. They look like they are going to give goals away all the time. They don’t sense danger, they’ve got no pace, they don’t get physical against people

2019 10 18 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes reveals two signings that signalled Man Utd downfall] When you look five or six years ago when Alex Fergusson left, the other person who didn’t get the credit he deserved was David Gill. He was a football man and he knew footballers. From the day he and Sir Alex left, it has been difficult

I think the alarm bells rang straight away when David Moyes took over and signed Juan Mata and Marouane Fellaini for £70m. They are good players but I don’t think they were Man Utd players. I don’t think Sir Alex and David Gill would have signed those players. We are in this position now because we have signed players who are not Man Utd players. Ole is in there now and trying to put it right

[Scholes picks out the two best managers in the world] I think [Ole needs] four or five transfer windows, and they have to be good transfer windows. Ole’s first three signings have been good and promising. As long as he is in charge of the players coming in, I don’t see a problem. We hope it goes to back challenging for titles and Champions Leagues

I’d still say Pep Guardiola. I know Liverpool are eight points clear and they won the Champions League last year, but they’ve not won the league yet! Jurgen Klopp’s a great manager, don’t get me wrong and the football they’re playing and the style of play is magnificent, but I’d still go for Guardiola after what he’s done. I’d have Guardiola as number one and Jurgen Klopp as a very close number two

2019 10 18b Retrieve

[Man Utd legend Paul Scholes mocks Liverpool ahead of crunch Premier League showdown] Liverpool missed a big chance to win at Old Trafford last year. I think you could argue they blew the league at Old Trafford last season. [United] were really struggling at the time with injuries, just like they’re this year. Liverpool were really poor on the day. Look we know they’re a good team and the quality they have got but they have still got to come to Old Trafford and win a game there

I know it’s difficult to see where United goals are coming from. It will have to be a bit of individual brilliance because the creativity of the team isn’t really there, especially without Pogba playing. Rashford is capable of it. Dan James has shown he is capable of it. From a set-piece Harry Maguire could be capable of it

[Scholes was also quizzed on how many of the current squad would get into Klopp’s team] Well…none of them want to get in the Liverpool team

2019 10 18c Retrieve

[Man Utd legend Paul Scholes names Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp as the two best managers in the world] I’d still say Pep Guardiola. I know Liverpool are eight points clear and they won the Champions League last year, but they’ve not won the league yet!

Jurgen Klopp’s a great manager, don’t get me wrong and the football they’re playing and the style of play is magnificent, but I’d still go for Guardiola after what he’s done. I’d have Guardiola as number one and Jurgen Klopp as a very close number two

2019 10 20 Retrieve

[Manchester United legend Paul Scholes knew former club were doomed when Juan Mata and Marouane Fellaini joined] When you look five or six years ago when Sir Alex Ferguson left, the only person that’s probably going to get the credit he deserved was David Gill [former chief executive]. He was a football man. From the day he went, as well as Sir Alex, it’s been difficult

I think there were alarm bells straightaway really when David [Moyes] took over and he signed Juan Mata and Fellaini for something like £70m. They’re good players in their own right, but I don’t think they were Manchester United players. I don’t think Sir Alex or David Gill would have signed those types of players, so I think from then on, alarm bells have rung and we’re in the position we are now because of buying players who we don’t really think are Man Utd players

I think four or five transfer windows and they’ve got to be four or five good transfer windows. I think Ole’s first few signings have been very good, very promising and as long as he’s the man in charge of the players that are coming in, then I don’t see a problem

2019 11 07 Retrieve

[Asked if bringing in a director of football on board would be a step in the right direction] Maybe. We know behind the scenes there is help needed on the football side of things. You look at the business side and it’s great. Ed Woodward is very good at that but as a football man, I don’t think he is a football man

I think in the past there was Sir Alex Ferguson and David Gill. Gill has been a massive miss for this football club. He knew a good player when he saw one and he disagreed with the manager, of course.

Now there has to be a little bit of help for Ole. There are good people around him such as the chief scout and Mike Phelan with his experience, but now is a time when he [Solskjaer] needs help bringing top players to this football club

2019 12 20 Retrieve

[Quote on Zlatan] He’s a fit lad, he looks after himself, he’s got great charisma. He’s a great character

2019 12 27 Retrieve

[Former Manchester United midfielder Paul Scholes has poured cold water over Liverpool’s Club World Cup success, insisting the tournament wasn’t that serious when he was at Old Trafford] Well you want to win it once you’re there but I don’t think it was ever something that we were desperate to win. Even now if someone said to you ‘What trophies did you win over the years?’ I don’t think we’d mention the World Club Championship. I really don’t. I’m not joking, I’m serious! But you know what, it’s like anything else, it might take more importance over the years. It looks like Liverpool have enjoyed it, they’ve celebrated it and probably will mention it and why not – but just when we were playing it wasn’t that serious I don’t think. But now you look back I suppose you’re quite happy but it’s not something you set out to do as a player I don’t think

[Scholes was then asked which meant more to him - Club World Cup glory or winning a trophy at his local badminton club - to which he responded] My badminton trophy!

2019 12 28 Retrieve

[Scholes backs Man Utd for top-four Premier League finish] We’ve seen that obviously, they beat Tottenham, they beat City, the way they did. Okay, we talk about being consistent - a poor result at Watford, a poor performance really, but they came here tonight, a tough place to come. Burnley does make it really difficult for you, but United were in complete control apart from maybe five or 10 minutes towards the end

Six weeks ago you’re thinking the only way they [Manchester United] get into the Champions League is through the Europa League, possibly winning that. Now, with Chelsea losing a little bit of form as well, losing a bit of consistency, you’re not sure what you’re going to get from them from week to week. What are they? A point behind them now? Chelsea have still got a game in hand, but they’ll be looking back at United. They look confident now, and I think the minimum they should be expecting is to finish in the top four

2019 12 29 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes declares Manchester United’s front three is among the best in Europe after seeing the side scrape past Burnley 2-0 on Saturday] The front three are as good as any team in the league or any team in Europe when you look at them, when they fancy it. When Martial’s running at you, when Rashford’s running at you, James has been brilliant, they’re bringing Mason Greenwood into it too. It’s just in behind that worries me. [Paul] Pogba, yes, we know the quality that he has if he’s on song, if his attitude is right, if he’s playing right, if his concentration is right - there’s not a better midfield player than him in the world. Just everything else around that, just doesn’t seem quite good enough.

I keep hearing people say they’re lacking consistency because they’re young but they aren’t. If you actually look at the team, it’s not that young. Ok, there’s James and Rashford, but he’s played a lot of games, scored a lot of goals now. You can talk about age and lack of experience but I don’t think that’s a problem. There’s enough experience, I just don’t think the quality is quite there

2020 01 05 Retrieve

[Former Red Devil Paul Scholes also recently praised the Manchester United’s attacking options] The front three are as good as any team in the league or any team in Europe when you look at them, when they fancy it. When Martial’s running at you, when Rashford’s running at you, James has been brilliant, they’re bringing Mason Greenwood into it too

2020 01 16 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes believes Marcus Rashford will be ready to face Liverpool] I think it was actually something he picked up in the Manchester City game where he got a bit of a knock on his back. But he played the Norwich game, was excellent Saturday so this was an opportunity for him to have a break. Ok it didn’t quite work out, he had to come on because United were struggling. I think he’ll be ok, he walked off alright and maybe a bit of ice, couple of days rest, he’ll be fine for Sunday

2020 01 23 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes says Man Utd’s defeat to Burnley might spur club on to complete Bruno Fernandes deal] Too often this season Manchester United have had two good results and then had two or three bad results. That performance might do him [Solskjaer] a favour in the transfer market. It might spur the club on to spend that few extra million on the players they’re looking at like Bruno Fernandes. It might get done tomorrow because of this. He needs more bodies in the building. He’s got some big injuries so he needs help. The club needs to help him now. I fear for the next few weeks because the injured players aren’t coming back for a while. He’s stuck with these players for now unless they sign anyone

2020 01 23b Retrieve

[Paul Scholes insists Paul Pogba won’t help Man Utd on his return] I don’t think Pogba is on his way back [from injury] and even if he is on way back, he’ll be moaning about something else to try and not play - try to get his move away from the club. We keep going on about the players that are missing but that squad of players, that team tonight, should be enough to beat Burnley.

I fear for the next four-or-five weeks because I don’t think any of them players are coming back quickly. I don’t think McTominay is coming back. Marcus Rashford is looking like being out for three months. He is stuck with these players for the next six weeks and he has got to somehow coach these players and work these players to get a bit of confidence back. They need to try and get some results - they’ve got some hard games in the next few weeks. This is a really tough time for them

2020 02 14 Retrieve

[Man Utd legend Scholes not expecting many starts from striker] I don’t think Odion Ighalo’s a signing for the long term. I think his scoring record in China is very good but is it that credible? I don’t know. He is an out-and-out centre forward, I don’t think United have an out-and-out centre forward. He’ll play with his back to goal and he might bring players into play. It’s good to have an extra body but when you’re United you want an extra body with quality and he’s got that to prove. He’ll bring something different. I don’t see him starting many games

Fred has really improved over the last six to seven weeks. I think he still needs to bring goals and assists to his game, but you’d have to put him in there. I think [Scott] McTominay, his form in the early part of the season. Fernandes could possibly play further up the field. It’s a case of just trying to fit the best players in whatever position they play

[Quizzed on how Pogba’s absence] I don’t think it would’ve gone down very well. Players seem to go off and do their own stuff now. When I was there, our manager wouldn’t have allowed that type of thing to happen

2020 02 19 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes says Anthony Martial lacks intelligence in the final third of the pitch] Ole [Gunnar Solskjaer] clearly thinks there’s a centre forward in there and he’s telling him to get in the box as often as he can. Tonight he laboured at times to get in the box, he didn’t really bust a gut. You shouldn’t need to [tell a striker to get into the penalty box], but if you’re Anthony Martial he looks like he needs telling. He looks like he doesn’t take that much information in. Some players are like that, sometimes you tell them once and they’ll do it all the time. He looks like you need to tell him every two minutes, what you want him to do

[Scholes added on Martial’s decisive goal] If he’s capable of stuff like that, he did it once tonight and he got his goal, so Ole will be after more of that

2020 02 27 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes says Bruno Fernandes has been described as sensational] It was a perfect night and there were a lot of very good performances. Fernandes stood out and he controlled the pace of play. He looks like he has brought this team to life. He has made a team that did not look that watchable at times look exciting and very watchable right now. When you bring in a player like Fernandes it livens everyone up. Usually a player from a different country takes more time. Hopefully, he stays in this form for the rest of the season. What do I like about Bruno? Everything so far. Creativity. His awareness on the pitch. Before the ball comes to him he knows what’s around him. He’s sensational - you just wonder why nobody else came in for him or why we didn’t get him in the summer

When I think of him the only other player I can think of is Kevin De Bruyne at Manchester City. He is the best player in the Premier League but Fernandes is right up there

2020 02 28 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes says Bruno Fernandes backed to cover Paul Pogba departures] I think the fact that the last couple of weeks nobody has mentioned Pogba coming back into the team speaks volumes about what Fernandes has brought to the team. He’s probably brought what you expected from Pogba over the last couple of years, which hasn’t quite materialised. I think the balance of the team looks really good

He’s playing [Nemanja] Matic and Fred, I know it was [Scott] McTominay [against Brugge], but those two sitting there allowing Fernandes the freedom has really worked for them. I don’t think you go away from that when it’s working

With the Pogba situation, we know what a top player he is, it doesn’t look like he’ll be here next year - we don’t know that, but we think that from what we’re hearing. I just think carry on as you were, it’s looking good enough at the minute. With Pogba, the way he’s played, would he get into this team at the minute? It would be tough for him. With the way the team’s playing, how can you change that? They’ve looked as good as they’ve looked in the last three or four years to me

2020 03 01 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes in the aftermath of Bruno Fernandes’ latest star turn against Club Brugges] He looks like he has brought this team to life. He has made a team that did not look that watchable at times look exciting and very watchable right now. What do I like about Bruno? Everything so far. Creativity. His awareness on the pitch. Before the ball comes to him he knows what’s around him. He’s sensational

2020 04 10 Retrieve

[Manchester United legend Paul Scholes has hailed the impact made by new signing Bruno Fernandes] The one thing with Bruno is he doesn’t look like a central midfielder to me, he’s an out-and-out No.10. He’s great on the ball, always on the half turn and he’s the link that United really needed. They lacked that quality in midfield and since he came in he’s had that. He can feed the ball in to players, he’s got a great shot on him and he looks like a real leader as well. United had lacked that. Whether he can play in midfield in a two, that’s yet to be seen. He’s more like an Eric Cantona, a Teddy Sheringham – he can beat players as well. He is somebody who brings what was sadly missing at Old Trafford and he seems to have livened up everyone

They are still behind, but they have brought a brilliant player in who seems to have knitted it all together. They did have a really good group of players but missed that one person who can make a difference - like a David Silva or Kevin De Bruyne who can glue the team together with their attacking movements. I still think they are a bit off the pace, they’ve looked good lately since Fernandes came in but Liverpool and Manchester City are streets ahead. There are three or four signings that can help but for the first time in a long time you feel like they could close the gap to the top

2020 04 11 Retrieve

[Scholes: Inter were only side ever interested in me but Man Utd were biggest club in the world anyway] I was never ever made aware of any team coming in for me. I did have one phone call off an agent, Bryan Robson’s old agent, he rang me while we were away at Euro 2000 to ask me if I would be interested in going to Inter Milan but that’s the only phone call I ever had. I never heard anything after that and the manager never said anything to me. I was playing at my boyhood club, I was a Manchester lad, we were winning trophies all the time. If the manager said to me that he didn’t want me I would definitely have gone if there was a big club abroad who wanted me but there was never any need to ever think about Barcelona, Real Madrid or AC Milan because I was at the biggest club in the world anyway. We didn’t win as many Champions Leagues as we should have but we were every inch as good as those teams, if not better.

[Fernandes looks to have transformed United’s midfield in his short time at the club] They lacked that quality in midfield and since he came in he’s had that. He can feed the ball in to players, he’s got a great shot on him and he looks like a real leader as well. United had lacked that. Whether he can play in midfield in a two, that’s yet to be seen. He’s more like an Eric Cantona, a Teddy Sheringham – he can beat players as well. He is somebody who brings what was sadly missing at Old Trafford and he seems to have livened up everyone

2020 04 19 Retrieve

[Scholes delighted to see Rashford thrive at Man Utd] I always remember watching him, mainly in the reserve team, and he was an out and out centre-forward. Sometimes I would go to games and just watch him, and not really watch where the ball was. I’d look for his movement - is he clever enough to have that link with a midfield player? I think he has that. I was really excited when he first got into the team, a little bit luckily at first - I think there was an injury to someone. But ever since he has got into the team, he has shown the talent he has got as a centre-forward or a player wide on the left. I always remember seeing him as a kid and I thought his intelligence and movement was as a centre-forward. He looked like an out-and-out No.9, but now when you see him in games, he seems to enjoy it more from the left-hand side

2020 04 19b Retrieve

[Scholes repaid the compliment when asked which attributes of Rashford’s game impressed him] Same as any midfield player looks for, you look for a player who can come short but more importantly a player with pace, like Marcus has, speed and movement. You don’t need to look and these players sometimes, you don’t need to talk to them it’s just sometimes just a little look, you are on the ball, time and space, you see space over a centre-half. I know I can just dink it over a centre-half or over a full-back and he’s got the speed to fly past someone and the composure to score a goal as well

2020 04 21 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes says Pogba is like Gerrard, he can do everything] I played a bit with Paul and everyone knows the talent he’s got. He’s been brilliant for Juventus, brilliant for France in the World Cup and really good at times here [at United] as well. He can do everything as a midfield player and you’d probably liken him to Steven Gerrard with the pace, the power, the skill. He can do absolutely everything

2020 04 19 Retrieve

[Scholes delighted to see Rashford thrive at Man Utd] I always remember watching him, mainly in the reserve team, and he was an out and out centre-forward. Sometimes I would go to games and just watch him, and not really watch where the ball was. I’d look for his movement - is he clever enough to have that link with a midfield player? I think he has that. I was really excited when he first got into the team, a little bit luckily at first - I think there was an injury to someone. But ever since he has got into the team, he has shown the talent he has got as a centre-forward or a player wide on the left. I always remember seeing him as a kid and I thought his intelligence and movement was as a centre-forward. He looked like an out-and-out number nine, but now when you see him in games, he seems to enjoy it more from the left-hand side

A lot of it depends on the players that you are playing with. When you are on the left, you can create a lot more things on your own, giving that little bit more to the team. Whereas when you are playing up front, sometimes you are isolated and need someone in midfield who can find passes for 90 minutes of a game, so you can disappear in games sometimes as a number nine.

2020 05 12 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes says Manchester United were all ready to unveil Ronaldinho and hand him a squad number when the Brazilian changed his mind at the last minute and headed to Barcelona] I always remember two or three that were possibly coming – Harry Kewell was one, and you knew what a good player he was. I think he ended up turning us down to go to Liverpool, which didn’t really bother us that much. Damien Duff was one at the time as well, Arjen Robben – I think he was very close to coming. As a midfielder you look forward to playing with quick players who can run with the ball and score you goals. The one that stands out is Ronaldinho. I can’t remember what year it was but I really think the manager got him. We were away in pre-season and I think they were close to announcing him and giving him a number but I think he ended up changing his mind at the last minute and signed for Barcelona. It’s strange because in that pre-season tour we were playing against Barcelona so we were all excited - ‘Ronaldinho, what a player’. He was coming from PSG and we all thought he is going to bring something special – almost like what Cantona brought to the team – and the next minute, three days later we are playing against him in Seattle and everyone is trying to kick him! We tried to boot him because he didn’t sign for us. I was lucky enough to play with so many great players and he would have just been another, but it never happened

2020 05 13 Retrieve

[Scholes names Real Madrid duo as the modern players most like him] I’d like to think I played a little bit like Luka Modric. He’s different to me because he was quicker than me, he can beat a man, but I see certain traits in him, like controlling a game. It’s probably more towards Toni Kroos, as a passer and more of a controlling player. He doesn’t really get involved physically with people and scores the odd goal here and there. I think if I had to choose between the two I’d be more like Kroos than Modric. When I watch those two for Real Madrid in those great European Cup winning teams, they’re the two

2020 06 01 Retrieve

[Scholes laments ‘ridiculous’ Real Madrid and Barca teams] We were quite unlucky really. In any other era we might have won four, five, or six European Cups. But the teams that were about - you look at Guardiola’s Barcelona team. Jesus, how good were they?! You could go right through the team. In midfield, you had Andres Iniesta, Xavi, Sergio Busquets and Lionel Messi. Henry on the left. Centre halves of Gerard Pique and Carlos Puyol. Just unreal. They’re without doubt the best team I’ve played against. They’re one of the best teams that has ever been

If I go a bit further back I think of the Real Madrid side that we played against. We got absolutely battered in the Bernabeu one year. 3-1 it was in the first game but what a team that was. It’s not far away from that Barcelona team. They had the Brazilian Ronaldo, Zinedine Zidane, Luis Figo, Redondo was unreal, Raul, Roberto Carlos, Hierro, Iker Casillas in goal, that was a team that was just ridiculous. We came up against some ridiculous teams. We did alright against them but Barcelona just had that edge over that great Real Madrid team

2020 06 01b Retrieve

[Scholes accuses Deschamps of overreacting to get Man Utd midfielder suspended for Champions League final] You just deal with it don’t you. I was gutted at the time but there’s nothing you can do about it. I tackled Deschamps and I’ve seen it a few times. I don’t think it was a foul, to be honest with you. It was right in front of the ref, he screamed like a big girl, like a big baby which didn’t help me. It got me booked and I missed the final but I may not have played in the final, you never know

[Scholes says this was proof of the strength in depth Sir Alex Ferguson had throughout his fearsome squad at the time] We had massive games. Big games against Spurs to win the league, the FA cup final the next Saturday and then the Champions League final. I was devastated to miss it, of course I was. Roy was as well. But it didn’t matter who was missing, we still had the capability in the squad, someone can fill in and do just as good a job

2020 06 01b Retrieve

[Paul Scholes has lamented the ‘ridiculous’ Real Madrid and Barcelona teams that thwarted Manchester United in the Champions League, insisting that ‘in any other era we might have won five or six European Cups’] We were quite unlucky really. In any other era we might have won four, five, or six European Cups. But the teams that were about - you look at Guardiola’s Barcelona team. Jesus, how good were they?! You could go right through the team. In midfield, you had Andres Iniesta, Xavi, Sergio Busquets and Lionel Messi. Henry on the left. Centre halves of Gerard Pique and Carlos Puyol. Just unreal. They’re without doubt the best team I’ve played against. They’re one of the best teams that has ever been

[Scholes went on to admit that United were also outclassed by Real Madrid’s 2002-03 team] If I go a bit further back I think of the Real Madrid side that we played against. We got absolutely battered in the Bernabeu one year. 3-1 it was in the first game but what a team that was. It’s not far away from that Barcelona team. They had the Brazilian Ronaldo, Zinedine Zidane, Luis Figo, Redondo was unreal, Raul, Roberto Carlos, Hierro, Iker Casillas in goal, that was a team that was just ridiculous. We came up against some ridiculous teams. We did alright against them but Barcelona just had that edge over that great Real Madrid team

2020 06 06 Retrieve

[Scholes is very much a member of the Fernandes fan club] Sometimes it just takes one player to turn a team around and knit a team together. I don’t like talking about City, but you think of David Silva - that player that links all the play together, and I think we’ve found him in Fernandes. He’s totally transformed the team. It’s gone from watching a little bit of a dull team, to one player coming in and all of a sudden they look like they’re going to create, they look like they’re going to score goals every time he’s in possession of the ball. He’s fitted in straight away. Nemanja Vidic and Patrice Evra really struggled for the first six to eight months. I think they signed in January. It wasn’t until the season after when they really got used to it and picked up and went on to have really amazing careers. But this lad, he’s picked it up straight away, and it’s been a real benefit. I keep saying he’s transformed the team, but I really think he has

Paul has got a little bit of work to do to get into the team. Before the outbreak happened and the stop happened, you have to say that the players that were playing – Nemanja Matic, Scott McTominay and Fred – they were really doing well in midfield. It’s not going to be straightforward for Paul. He’s got some work on his hands just to get back into the team. But we all know what Paul’s capable of. He’s a top player when he’s on form. The better players you play with - surely that can only be to the benefit of the team

2020 06 07 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes has backed Manchester United to secure a top-four finish] Yes I am. I think if we didn’t have this break, I think we were certainties to get it. There’s just no knowing how we’ll come out of it. I think we’ll be fine. We’ve got big players coming back into the team, which we didn’t have in Marcus and Paul coming back into the squad. If they can come back, hit the ground running I think they’ve got every chance. It’d be great to get to an FA Cup final as well, although it’ll probably be a little bit strange with no fans there - but still, it’s a trophy and you’d like to win it. You just have to wait and see but I think they’ve got a great chance. What is it, three points behind Chelsea? Our fixtures do look quite favourable. Fingers crossed we’ll come back in the same vein of form and hopefully get that Champions League spot at the end of the year

2020 06 08 Retrieve

[Paul Scholes has recalled being man-marked by Park Ji-sung in training] I do remember you trying to man-mark me, but you weren’t the only one, Wes! Do you know who the worst one was? Park Ji-sung. He was a nightmare! He was unbelievable. Do you remember when he did it against [Andrea] Pirlo? Ah, he was unreal! He had energy all day and discipline. The discipline was unreal. He just used to come up to me, look at me and not say a word, stand right next to me… ‘Oh Jesus, here we go!’ ‘Come on, ginge!’ - Just say something to me, have a laugh with me! But he was unbelievable at it. He just used to come and stare right into my face, stare right into my eyes, ‘You’re not getting a kick today’

[Scholes also revealed that he initially rose through United’s academy ranks as a centre-forward] I grew up as a centre-forward. I was just a goalscorer which you find hard to believe to where my position went on but I always liked playing in midfield. Eric Harrison always said I’d be a central midfield player and possession was everything we did when you’re 11-12 years of age in the academy, it was just always about possession so over the years you’re just watching players and you learn how to do it