Manchester United finished up 3-1 victors over Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane, but the victory was somewhat spoiled by the sending off of Paul Scholes, who was made to walk after two yellow card offences. Did the punishment fit the crime or is it about time the ‘Ginger Prince’ mastered the art of tackling?
It is often said that Paul Scholes simply cannot tackle; he is a magnificent midfield player who has an Achilles heel. Against Tottenham he showed his full repertoire of tools, the long range passing, his ability to hold the ball and find space for himself, his ability to spot a cutting edge pass and bring others into play, in addition to his undeniable capacity to mistime the tackle.
This uncanny gift Scholes possesses, earned him the ninth red card of his career. It was coming, from the moment Scholes was booked for his rash and clumsy tackle on Jermain Defoe, he was walking a thin line. The second yellow is far more contentious, a 50-50 ball, which he and Tom Huddlestone both competed for and to his credit, whenever Scholes knew he was not going to win the ball he, in my view, pulled out of the challenge.
The sour taste is echoed by Sir Alex Ferguson, “He’s never touched him. He’s been sent off because his name is Paul Scholes. That is why he was sent off. It was a ridiculous decision.”
However, Paul Scholes is a professional footballer who, at 34 years of age, should know the laws of the game, and I would hope, has practiced ‘tackling’ of some sort, during his many training sessions at Carrington. I wonder why he can be so reckless in his challenges time and time again, especially when already carrying a yellow card.
His penchant for the yellow card has ruled Scholes out of many important games, whilst getting himself sent of in important matches has also been an illness which needs remedied. The most famous and significant match in which he picked up a yellow card was the 3-2 victory over Juventus in the 1999 Champions League Semi-Final that subsequently ruled the midfield maestro out of the Final.
Time may not be on his side with his extremely successful career winding down, but please Paul learn to put in a legal challenge, if not, it may cost your beloved Manchester United dear in the future.