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Ten Things You Should Know About...Paul Scholes
The Master of Old Trafford was at the centre of Sir Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United success but here are some things you might not know about him.
#1. He was born on 16 November 1974 in Salford, England but grew up in Langley, Middleton, Greater Manchester.
#2.The goal that Scholes,himself,describes as his best ever, was a long range right-foot volley from a David Beckham corner. It occurred when their Manchester United team visited Valley Parade in April 2000 to take on Bradford City.Only a player of Scholes' sublime technical ability could have delivered such a finish.
#3.Scholes represented the England team from 1997 to 2004. He secured 66 caps and took part in both the 1998 and 2002 World Cup finals. He also participated in the UEFA European championship finals of 2000 and 2004. Many excellent judges believe that he retired prematurely.
#4. Schoolboy Scholes went to Cardinal Langley High School in Middleton, Manchester. It is the same school that comic actor Steve Coogan attended. Uncannily Scholes was nicknamed "sat nav" whilst Coogan's alter ego Alan Partridge was a sat nav voice for Garmin. Spooky...
#5. Platini? Pele? George Best perhaps? Who was the player that the young Scholes admired the most (and continues to). Why it was Frankie Bunn of course. That's Frankie Bunn, the Oldham Athletic winger and legend. As Scholes said "He once scored six goals against Scarborough in a League Cup tie.” (This remains the highest individual scoring feat in an English League Cup tie.)
#6. The incomparable Zinedine Zidane, French World Cup winning hero, and star of European giants Real Madrid and Juventus commented: "My toughest opponent? Scholes of Manchester. He is the complete midfielder. Scholes is undoubtedly the greatest midfielder of his generation."
#7. Scholes played 466 times for Manchester United from making his debut in 1993 until he retired in 2011. He scored 102 goals during this time. The first retirement was short lived and he returned to an adoring Old Trafford for one last hurrah for the 2012-13 season. He made a further 33 appearances and notched 5 goals before finally bowing out.
#8. It is said that the genius has a different mind set. The much praised Scholes commented "I don't like compliments. No. I prefer criticisms; prefer to prove them wrong". Enough said.
#9.Scholes received four red cards and 99 yellow cards in the Premier League. At the time of his retirement he was the third most booked player in Premier League history.In the Champions League he was top of the pile having been booked 32 times.
#10.David Beckham, one time teammate, paid this compliment when he was surrounded by Galacticos at the Bernabeu: "He's always one of those people others talk about. Even playing at Real Madrid, the players always say to me 'what's he like'? They respect him as a footballer, and to have that respect from some of those players is great."
And here’s one more to make it a football eleven:
#11.His old team mate,Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, summed up Scholes: “He's not the quickest, he doesn't run the most, he never wins a header, he can't tackle but he's the best player”. It’s a view shared by football fans all over the World.