So much for Moyes to learn

He still uses "we" when addressing the team, but that is no surprise, because Paul Scholes is Manchester United through and through.

Born in Salford, not far from Old Trafford, he signed for the club on July 8 1991 and only left on May 19 last year.

That's nearly 22 years playing for one club, a rarity for a top-class professional in the modern game.

In that lifetime playing for United and Alex Ferguson - Scholes only played under one club manager - the talented midfielder has never been a fan of the Red Devils' away kits, simply because they were not the right colour.


When the reluctant local-lad-turned-superstar - who by his own admission, always kept to himself - comes out in surprisingly frank fashion to address the current United situation, we sit up and listen.

"(David Moyes) is such a hardworking man, so hopefully for all his hard work, he'll get things right. But it's not always enough, hard work, is it," he told The New Paper, speaking on the sidelines of Courts' 40th birthday celebrations.

"I'm sure most managers in the Premier League work as hard as they can every week, but most of the time they get beat."

United's troubles since Moyes took over Ferguson last June has been making the headlines for most of the season.

The reigning champions are a lowly seventh in the Premier League, out of both domestic cup competitions and face a daunting Champions League quarter-final clash against Bayern Munich.

Moyes has faced a barrage of criticism, with many suggesting he would have been fired if United had not overcome Olympiakos in the Round of 16 Champions League meeting.

Make no mistake, Scholes still backs Moyes to come good and step out of the shadows of the former manager.

But the 39-year-old revealed critical factors that Ferguson displayed in his 27-year reign at the Theatre of Dreams, that his successor has just not worked out, yet.

"I just think (Ferguson) was a great man-manager - he knew how to handle players and whenever he dropped you or left you out of the team, he still made you feel like you're the best player," said Scholes, who admitted being just as afraid of Ferguson today as he was when he broke into the United first team in 1992.

It is not the same situation in Moyes' United side.

Over the course of the season, there have been rumours swirling about the unhappiness of Japan's star midfielder Shinji Kagawa and Robin van Persie.

And Scholes said: "I think there's been rumblings of people not being happy, and not getting the games they would like... I think he's (Moyes) found that difficult."

"We've seen what (Moyes) has done at Everton, he just has to get used to this job - it's a totally different job," added the Englishman, who pointed to the fact that Moyes now has to contend with a squad of greater depth and quality.

Scholes played a key part in United's unforgettable Treble-winning success in the 1998-99 season, and has won 11 Premier League, three FA Cup and two Champions League winners medals.

He was capped 66 times by his country, playing in the 1998 and 2002 World Cups, as well as the Euro 2000 and Euro 2004 tournaments.


Recognised as one of the finest attacking English midfielders of the modern era, he has almost always been an automatic choice for club and country.

He believes Moyes is still coming to grips with a situation that he did not have in his 11-year tenure at Goodison Park - multiple options to form a best 11.

"I really don't think (Moyes) knows his best team, (although) he may have stumbled across it last week against Olympiakos," said Scholes, referring to United's 3-0 victory over the Greek champions.

While injuries to various players, including the likes of van Persie, Nemanja Vidic and Phil Jones, have not helped Moyes' cause, Ferguson had a system in place.

"For the big games, (Ferguson) always had nine or 10 names written down straight away, with maybe one or two opened up for debate - he know his strongest team," Scholes revealed.

"And then for the other games he'd get his squad players to play, which kept everybody happy. It was a game and (Ferguson) knew the best way to get the best performance out of his players and that's why it was so good to play for him."

Squirming in his seat on Saturday at Courts' Tampines Megastore whenever he was praised, Scholes is clearly uncomfortable with stardom.

He is clearly hurting, though, like everyone else with Red Devils blood flowing through their veins.

"It's not been a great season, but we'll have to wait and see if (Moyes) can recover. There's still the quarter-finals of the Champions League to look forward to," he said.

"It is a transition period, and everyone at the club just hopes that next year, he gets it right."

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