Sport World Cup

Thursday 18 September 2014

Paul Scholes: ‘England could turn into the Republic of Ireland and fail to qualify for major tournaments’

Published 26/06/2014 | 12:19

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Paul Scholes
Paul Scholes

Paul Scholes believes England could struggle to qualify for international tournaments in the future and “go the way of the Republic of Ireland”.

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The former Manchester United star believes that England will have their work cut out to qualify in the future.

“From what I have seen at this World Cup, we’ll be lucky to qualify. I fear England are going the way of the Republic of Ireland, Wales and Scotland.”

The former United star made his claims in his blog for Paddy Power and believes that the Premier League’s policy of buying big name imports is to blame for England’s decline.

“English players are not getting enough first-team time in the Premier League. We’re going backwards from 1990 and the era of Paul Gascoigne and that ‘conveyor belt of talent’.”

He believes that the Premier League has suffered from being filled with inferior players. 

“Simply, the Premier League is riddled with average foreign players. This is having such a detrimental effect on the first-team opportunities for young English talent, and our international results.”

Scholes advocates putting a cap on the numbers of players Premier League clubs can import.

“The Premier League is a cash cow and it’s hurting our national game.

“We should limit the amount of foreign players allowed in each Premier League squad. Clubs will then only sign the best, and English talent gets priority for development.

Scholes also said the likes of teenage England star Luke Shaw was over-priced. Southampton left full Shaw has been tipped to join Manchester United on a £34million deal.

“The proposed £34m transfer for the 18-year-old Luke Shaw to Manchester United is another example of something which has a bad long-term impact.

“Clubs are priced out of this market which is why they go abroad for cheap options - they’re not better players. For a left-back to be worth £34m shows how silly the game has gone. For that money I want a centre-forward who’s going to score 30 goals a season.”

Scholes believes that Roy Hodgson has gotten away relatively lightly from the criticism of the team, due to his relationship with the press.

“Roy Hodgson is a likeable man who’s very good with the press. But if this was Fabio Capello
he’d be getting pelters.”

Scholes admitted that he was surprised that England performed so poorly at the World Cup.

“When I said to go for attacking youth in the England team, I thought we’d get one result.”

Scholes admits that the performances of some England players left him with a measure of optimism for the future.

“England can take some positives from the World Cup. Raheem Sterling, Daniel Sturridge and Ross Barkley (even though he didn’t start the first two games) are a sign of the future – fast, intelligent footballer.”

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