Paul Scholes names three toughest opponents he ever faced


Manchester United legend, Paul Scholes, has named the three toughest opponents he ever played against in the Premier League.

Scholes, who faced the likes of Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard during his time at Old Trafford, said Robbie Savage, Patrick Vieira and Pape Bouba Diop are the toughest opponents he came across while playing in the Premier League for Man United.

The former midfield maestro played 718 times for Man United during his 19 years at the club.

The former England international won 11 top flight titles, three FA Cups and two Champions Leagues with Man United.

Scholes, 47, ended his playing career in 2013 as Man United’s third-highest ever appearance holder, behind Bobby Charlton and Ryan Giggs.

“When I played central midfield, I like to go into games thinking ‘I just want to have all the time in the world here, just nobody around me, just find a little bit of space and pass the ball around,” Scholes told BBC Radio 5’s Savage Social show.

“Then you play against people like you [Robbie Savage]. An absolute nuisance, trying to close you down dead quick. I don’t want that, I just want it nice and relaxed.

“The way I played I didn’t really have to beat people or be stronger, quicker than the other person.

“I suppose Patrick Vieira, you play against him, he is so long, he’s so big. You think you have got the ball, and the next minute he nicks it over your head, he was a clever player as well.

“There is one more that people won’t think of. We used to play against Portsmouth. Do you remember Pape Bouba Diop? Big, massive. They used to call him the wardrobe.

“You get involved physically with him and you are wasting your time. I always found him awkward to play against. He was not a Vieira, of course, he was not, but he still had talent.”