Mourinho rounds on Scholes in tirade over Pogba flak

Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba escaping the attention of Everton centre-back Mason Holgate. The France international was instrumental in the 2-0 away win on Monday.
Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba escaping the attention of Everton centre-back Mason Holgate. The France international was instrumental in the 2-0 away win on Monday.PHOTO: REUTERS

LONDON • Jose Mourinho lambasted Paul Scholes after Manchester United's 2-0 win at Everton, accusing the club's former midfielder of being jealous of Paul Pogba's wealth and of failing as a pundit.

United produced a dominant second-half display at Goodison Park to record their first victory in five matches following goals from Anthony Martial and Jesse Lingard.

The visitors were inspired by Pogba, who was criticised by Scholes following Saturday's goal-less draw at home to Southampton, and Mourinho took the opportunity to return fire.

"Maybe I will be lucky this time and the kings of rock 'n' roll who said I was underperforming last match will now say I'm performing," the United manager said, referring to Scholes and two other former United players-turned-pundits, Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs.

Turning specifically to Scholes' criticism of Pogba, he added: "I think the only thing Paul Scholes does is criticise. I don't think he comments.

"Paul (Pogba) tries to do his best all the time. Sometimes he plays very well, sometimes he plays well, sometimes he doesn't play so well.

WALK IN MY SHOES BEFORE JUDGING

I think Scholes will be in history as a phenomenal player, not as a pundit. I prefer to look at him as a phenomenal player that gave so much to the club that I am proud to represent. If Paul one day decides to be a manager, I wish that he can be 25 per cent as successful as myself. Fifty per cent of that is 12.5 silverware, 25 per cent is around six.

JOSE MOURINHO, Manchester United manager and former Porto, Chelsea, Inter Milan and Real Madrid boss, who has won 25 trophies in his managerial career.

"It's not Paul's fault that he has made much more money than Scholes. It's not Scholes' fault either, it's just the way football is."

BT Sport pundit Scholes had accused Pogba of coasting through games and failing to make the sort of impact his £89 million (S$160.1 million) transfer fee demands.

The 43-year-old, who won 20 major trophies in 718 games for the Red Devils, recently claimed that his application for a job managing United's Under-23 team was turned down by the club's management.

And Mourinho went on to suggest that several former United players had an agenda against his team as they sought a return to the club, which he would not accommodate.

"I think they would love to be here," he said. "They would love to be at the club and that's a problem I cannot resolve."

The Portuguese also revealed that Romelu Lukaku, who was stretchered off against Southampton, did not suffer a concussion and will be available for selection for United's FA Cup third-round tie with Derby on Friday.

THE GUARDIAN, AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

PLAYING WITH THE HANDBRAKE ON

Where is the Paul Pogba we saw at Juventus? He is just strolling through games. Pogba doesn't look fit... He does not look like a player who will win you games and that is what you pay £90 million for. No one in England should be getting near him, but he is being asked to do a role he is not comfortable in. You have to say the manager has to take responsibility for that attitude.

PAUL SCHOLES, the former Manchester United midfielder, speaking to BT Sport as a pundit after United's 0-0 draw against Southampton on Saturday.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 03, 2018, with the headline 'Mourinho rounds on Scholes in tirade over Pogba flak'. Print Edition | Subscribe