Paul Scholes is of the opinion that Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers brought a refreshing change in Premier League and England national team should follow the suit. “It would be refreshing for England to adopt Liverpool’s attacking mentality in Brazil,” Scholes was speaking to Paddy Parker.
Former Manchester United player is also of the opinion that at least four to five Liverpool players should be selected in the playing XI. “That means certainly four, and possibly five, Liverpool players in the England starting XI against Italy on 14 June.”
As a reward for their excellent performances, Liverpools’ English players like Steven Gerard, Raheem Sterling, Jordan Henderson, Daniel Sturridge and Glen Johnson have been selected in the England World Cup squad.
Scholes also candidly claimed that last World Cup was a disaster for England. “South Africa in 2010 was so negative with boring draws. Nothing seemed to happen. England fans, and myself as an England fan, would rather 3‑3 games than dull 0-0 draws. I’d love to see Roy be brave enough to play like Liverpool [or Man United teams of the past].”
Scholes himself was the creative brain of both Manchester United and England during his playing days and knows the importance of central midfielder in the team. Hence, he believes that Steven Gerard has pivotal role to play for England in Brazil. “England’s success in the group stages hinges on Gerrard staying fit,” he said.
“Gerrard has adjusted his game superbly, very much like I did. He is likely to be asked to do a similar job in this England team to his ‘quarter-back’ role at Liverpool. However, not bringing Michael Carrick is a mistake. If there’s an injury to Gerrard nobody jumps out to replace him.
Another Liverpool player who has impressed Scholes is Henderson. “Jordan Henderson is a diamond of a lad who’s best described as ‘workmanlike’. He’s a player others appreciate having around them on the pitch. He’ll sacrifice himself for the attacking talent in a team like Liverpool. He’s not what you call world-class, but Henderson could be key to England controlling the ball and using it effectively.”
As Scholes is confident about midfield and attack, he is not convinced about the defence of this England side. “Right-back is probably Phil Jones’s best position right now, even though Jones could still develop into a great centre half. Johnson is a touch better going forward, but it’s a tight call.”
England is part of Group D in the World Cup and other members of the group include Italy, Uruguay and Costa Rica.