Speaking ahead of England’s clash against Uruguay, Manchester United legend Paul Scholes has lashed out at Luis Suarez, claiming that the striker had been extremely selfish and lucky in his career.
Paul Scholes revealed that during his years at Manchester United, Luis Suarez was not the striker that he is today and that Sir Alex Ferguson seldom adopted any specific strategy to stop him. He also went on to explain that Suarez was extremely selfish in his early years at Anfield and that he would waste opportunities for Liverpool.
“In 2012/2013 Suarez was pretty selfish and missed too many chances for Liverpool. Thinking of my time at Man United we didn’t worry about Suarez much – he’d barely get a kick at Old Trafford and I don’t remember any specific strategy to try to stop him playing, like we did with Park Ji-Sung on Andrea Pirlo in the Champions League, for example.”
Paul Scholes also commented on Suarez’s ability as a striker, hinting that he had been lucky in his career. Though he did compliment him on being a competent striker, comparing him to former team-mate Carlos Tevez, Scholes left no doubt that he did not rate Suarez very highly as a striker.
“Suarez reminds me of Carlos Tevez. He’s a nuisance – never gives you a minute’s peace. Suarez is also a lucky player. The ball seems to bounce off him into the right place. Luck or skill – he gets breaks other forwards don’t.”
Scholes however believes that Suarez has improved as he has stopped playing only for himself. His partnership with Sturridge has been the reason behind Liverpool’s resurgence last season and Scholes admitted that Suarez could change the game in Uruguay’s favour against England.
“Last season Suarez changed his game and wasn’t just thinking about himself. It made him a better player, especially in his partnership with Daniel Sturridge. Roy Hodgson has questioned whether Suarez is world class yet and challenged him to do it at the highest level. This can be a dangerous thing: ask David Moyes. Before Everton played Liverpool in October 2012 I remember Moyes had a pop at Suarez over his diving. A few days later Suarez celebrated a goal by diving in front of Moyes in the dug-out.”
Talking about Wayne Rooney, who Scholes had earlier criticized before the World Cup, the former midfielder believes that the English striker can destroy Uruguay’s defence if deployed in his preferred position. According to Scholes, Wayne Rooney is wasted on the flanks and should be positioned centrally if he is to have an impact in the game. He went on compliment Rooney as England’s ‘best goal-scorer’ and backed him to make an impact against Uruguay.
“Wayne Rooney can destroy Uruguay’s defence, if Wayne is played in his best position. Play our best goalscorer in his best position and he’ll get goals. His record at international level supports that. It’s not rocket science.”
It now remains to be seen if Wayne Rooney and Luis Suarez do indeed rise up to the occasion as the fate of both the countries hang in the balance.