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PLAYING DAYS NEARLY AT END SAYS SCHOLES
http://www.express.co.uk/football/view/83305/Playing-days-nearly-at-end-says-Scholes





PAUL SCHOLES accepts that after 13 years as the fulcrum of Manchester United's midfield, he is no longer first choice.

And with his 35th birthday coming up in November, Scholes has hinted that next season could be the last of his career, admitting “the end isn't far awayâ€.

Since returning from a knee operation at the beginning of December, Scholes has been used sparingly by Sir Alex Ferguson.

He has started only five of United's last 17 games with Michael Carrick, Darren Fletcher, Ryan Giggs, Anderson and Darron Gibson all competing for places in the engine room.


For so long one of the first names pencilled on Ferguson's team-sheet, former England star Scholes admits his three-month lay-off did not cause the slightest disruption to United's bid for an unprecedented quadruple of trophies.

Now after 588 appearances and with 18 months left on his contract, Scholes is happy to play a supporting role as a member of the strongest squad Ferguson has assembled at Old Trafford rather than as a leading man.

He said: “The end isn't far away, but my desire is as strong as ever and I want to keep helping the team in any way I can.

“Times have changed in terms of not playing as often as I would like. But that's the manager's way of looking after you and getting the best out of you.

“The fact is we do not miss anyone when they are out injured. We have the squad to handle things. There are always top-quality players who can come in and play equally as well or even better than the one they have replaced. I was not missed when I was out because we have so many players who can play in midfield.â€

Scholes, who made his first-team debut in 1994 and became a regular the following year, could be relied upon for a double-figure goals tally each season with his thunderbolt shooting and late runs into the penalty area.

He laments the fact the goals have largely dried up now – he managed only two last season and his first of this campaign came against Tottenham in the FA Cup 11 days ago.

“I don't go forward or score the amount of goals like I used to - and would still like to,†he said. “It's not great that I should have had to wait so long to score my first of the season. But that's just one of those things and it is something you just have to accept.â€

One thing that hasn't changed is Scholes' hunger for more silverware. He has won eight Premier League titles and with United overhauling Liverpool as leaders he would now love to make it nine.

“This a club that demands you win trophies and of course we want to win every competition we enter,†he said.

“But [the quadruple] is not something we've been thinking about. The momentum is with us and we want to keep it that way. It's been our aim to get to the top of the table and now we want to stay there.

“We're in a great position to be successful again and hopefully we can see it through.â€

“I don't go forward or score the amount of goals like I used to - and would still like to,†he said.

“It's not great that I should have had to wait so long to score my first of the season. But that's just one of those things and it is something you just have to accept.â€

But according to Ferguson, Scholes's experience, like that of two other two members of United's “old guardâ€, Ryan Giggs and Gary Neville, will play a vital role as the season reaches its climax, especially with United facing a marathon 67 games if they go all the way in the Champions League and FA Cup.

He said: “They have been there and have the experience. That's where their value comes in. At Stoke on Boxing Day, the three of them were our best players on the day. Their experience saw us through and that will see us through this season.â€

United's injury list continues to clear. Following the return of Rio Ferdinand and Wes Brown last week, Wayne Rooney, Patrice Evra and Nani are all back in full training and likely to be available for Sunday's visit to West Ham.

Anderson, though, is still sidelined by an ankle problem that has forced him to withdraw from Brazil's senior squad for next week's international friendly against Italy.

All 80,000 tickets for United's Champions League last 16 first leg against Jose Mourinho's Inter Milan in the San Siro stadium on February 24 have now been sold.
 

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HODOR!
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Top player and top bloke, one the few one club players left. Will be sad to see him stop playing and i hope he stays at the club in some form or another but don't think he's the kind of man that'll want to go into that, maybe could be an ambassador.
 

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wow..it sounds so apocalipticaly :p indeed it's going to be a sad day, but this is how things are. It would be wonderfull to be immortal, but if that would be true..than it would come for a time when we won't fit in our planet...so..this is the cycle of life.
Scholesy has been great all these years and will be ..be sure of that until he hangs his boots, but we have to be proud because not many teams have such players with the qulities and heart of Paul Scholes
 

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It will happen sooner or later and its beyong our control really but I wont be able to take the blow if he happens to retire the same time as the other two..even the same year.
 

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Its strange not seeing Scholesy start every game, cause we've become so used to seeing him do that

Anyway I guess there comes a time where we have to move on from the past

He realises it too which is good, and knows the importance of younger players getting a run-in
 

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Now thats what you can call a legend, on and off the pitch. A unted GREAT!!
Sad to say but he's not the Scholes i knew... this year, might be a good choice to bow out this summer.
 

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Wazza1989 said:
wow..it sounds so apocalipticaly :p indeed it's going to be a sad day, but this is how things are. It would be wonderfull to be immortal, but if that would be true..than it would come for a time when we won't fit in our planet...so..this is the cycle of life.
Scholesy has been great all these years and will be ..be sure of that until he hangs his boots, but we have to be proud because not many teams have such players with the qulities and heart of Paul Scholes

Ah g'wan. Have a little cry. Let it out. You know you want to. And sure, we're all friends here - there's no shame in it, you don't have to be brave :p

Oh no wait, that's me that wants to cry :eek:

NO SCHOLESY!!! DDOONNNNNNTTTTT LEEEEEEEEEAAAAAVVVVE MEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!
 

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i think when your carear is fastly approaching its end the players involved should be looking at picking the right moment {going out with a winners medal } , cantona and schmeical both picked the right time to leave utd and the end of this season could be a great opportunity for giggs and scholes to leave on a high they should be thinking hard about taking it .
so many sports stars go out on a losing note its quite sad the worst case was the legendry brian clough who went out a shadow of himself and it plagued him to the grave ,such great sportsmen should try and man manage a victorious departure from their clubs ,it may cost them some money but they get the glorious memories forever.
 

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sweet fa said:
i think when your carear is fastly approaching its end the players involved should be looking at picking the right moment {going out with a winners medal } , cantona and schmeical both picked the right time to leave utd and the end of this season could be a great opportunity for giggs and scholes to leave on a high they should be thinking hard about taking it .
so many sports stars go out on a losing note its quite sad the worst case was the legendry brian clough who went out a shadow of himself and it plagued him to the grave ,such great sportsmen should try and man manage a victorious departure from their clubs ,it may cost them some money but they get the glorious memories forever.
I absolutely agree.



About Scholes though - Obviously it is sad when a player leaves or retires. But they've got to at some point and hopefully, like sweet fa says, Neville, Giggs and Scholes, among others, can leave on a high and not a low.
 

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sweet fa said:
i think when your carear is fastly approaching its end the players involved should be looking at picking the right moment {going out with a winners medal } , cantona and schmeical both picked the right time to leave utd and the end of this season could be a great opportunity for giggs and scholes to leave on a high they should be thinking hard about taking it .
so many sports stars go out on a losing note its quite sad the worst case was the legendry brian clough who went out a shadow of himself and it plagued him to the grave ,such great sportsmen should try and man manage a victorious departure from their clubs ,it may cost them some money but they get the glorious memories forever.
You're right of course. And the thing about Scholsey is that his timing has always been impecable both on and off the pitch - just look at the way he retired from the international scene in order to prioritise his club career. He never wavered in that decision and I don't think he'll look back when he leaves, whenever that is. It must be a great feeling to look back on something you did in your life and know that you gave it your all every day and did the absolute best you could. For me, that's why he's so inspirational - it's not just what he does, it's how he has done it. That quiet, non attention-seeking professionalism is hard to find. Won't see the likes of him again too often. Total respect for the guy. Seriously - how can anyone NOT support the best club in the world?!! :)
 

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keeannoh said:
You're right of course. And the thing about Scholsey is that his timing has always been impecable both on and off the pitch - just look at the way he retired from the international scene in order to prioritise his club career. He never wavered in that decision and I don't think he'll look back when he leaves, whenever that is. It must be a great feeling to look back on something you did in your life and know that you gave it your all every day and did the absolute best you could. For me, that's why he's so inspirational - it's not just what he does, it's how he has done it. That quiet, non attention-seeking professionalism is hard to find. Won't see the likes of him again too often. Total respect for the guy. Seriously - how can anyone NOT support the best club in the world?!! :)
Not when tackling lol - still though a great player who's never lost his passing touch
 

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it will be a sad day for the club when he decides to call it a day. But at least hes not being delusional and thinking he can keep going, at least he will be going out still a great player.
 
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