Paul Scholes is a perfect role model and emerging Manchester United star Tom Cleverley is grateful he is able to watch him.
The Old Trafford legend is reportedly in his last season before retirement and Cleverley has been touted by many as his natural successor in Sir Alex Ferguson’s side.
The 23-year-old is currently away with the England squad for their World Cup qualifier with Montenegro and was speaking about watching Scholes at World Cup ’98 on television when he was a boy.
Scholes retired from international duty in 2004 and Cleverley described how much of a privilege it was to still be able to learn from him while training with Manchester United.
“It was Scholesy back then [France ‘98]. You just watch and learn with Scholesy, rather than speaking to him,” he is quoted as saying by the Daily Star.
“On the pitch I can learn a lot of things from him, the way he plays his game from short to long.”
“He’s a great person. He’s a great example for me to have around.”
Cleverley is highly rated by Manchester United manager Ferguson and England boss Roy Hodgson, with both placing more gradually placing more responsibility on his shoulders by selecting him for key games this season.
A product of the Old Trafford youth system, Cleverley believes his improvement has a lot to do with seeing a player with the quality of Scholes do his stuff.
The 38-year-old is famous for being an atypical English midfielder, in that his short-passing possession style differs greatly from the marauding all-action type Premier League fans are more accustomed to.
“Obviously he is one of the best in the world, and has been for many years, at keeping the ball,” he adeed.
"Not only just keeping the ball but hurting teams as well. That’s a big part of Scholesy’s game.
“You can keep the ball as long as you want, playing it sideways 10 yards, but he also hurt teams as well which you have to have in your game at this level.”