Thursday 8 December 2016

Paul Scholes urges Manchester United to 'show more balls' after Europa League exit

Published 18/03/2016 | 00:25

BT Sport pundit Paul Scholes
BT Sport pundit Paul Scholes
Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal applauds supporters after the match. Photo: AFP/Getty Images

Manchester United legend Paul Scholes has questioned whether the players now representing his former club have the courage to perform in the famous red shirt.

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Not for the first time this season, Scholes was scathing in his criticism of United as they crashed out of the Europa League following a 1-1 home draw against Liverpool, which secured a comfortable 3-1 victory for Jurgen Klopp’s side.

It was an all too predictable demise to United and Van Gaal, with Scholes questioning whether they have the characters in their squad to achieve success at the highest level.

“We talk about bravery and we talk about having the balls to go to places like Anfield, to places like Arsenal, to Manchester City on Sunday and playing,” Scholes told BT Sport.

“Take the ball, pass the ball. Be brave on the ball. This United team don’t look like they have that. This is why they are sixth in the league and now out of the Europa League.

“They look alright here (at Old Trafford), they look dangerous, but they go away from home to West Brom or Stoke and they look completely different.”

Scholes suggested the biggest mistake of the Van Gaal era at the club may have been the players that have been allowed to leave, with the big money replacements failing to deliver.

“Every time I watch United, I end up looking at the players who have left the club and you scratch your head,” he continued.

“Danny Welbeck is the biggest example. He should never have been allowed to leave this club. He is a big example of what Man Utd are. He was here from the age of nine until he got into the first time. He is big, strong. He can make a goal, score a goal, can play left wing, right wing, centre forward…..he’d walk into this team now.

“Whether these decisions have come from the manager or beyond the manager, I just don’t know. I’m pretty sure it did come from the manager and it should never ever have been allowed to happen.”

Scholes insisted he didn’t know whether Van Gaal would still be in charge of United next season, but former United midfielder Paul Ince was a little more forthright in his assertion that the Dutchman will soon be ousted from his post.

“He has been here for some time now and I don’t know what Man Utd are trying to do,” stated Ince. “We are in March now and there is no idea for me what they are trying to do and how they are going about it.

“The jury has been out on him for some time. Man Utd teams are based on creating chances and scoring goals and this team don’t do enough of that.

“These fans want Man Utd to play the old way. You are not going to get a Scholesy, a Keane, a Giggs. These players don’t come along too often, but you still expect Man Utd to attack teams here and have a presence. They have lost that presence and they have to regain that.”

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