Sir Alex Ferguson is proud to still have Paul Scholes at Manchester United.

After Ryan Giggs' masterclass at Derby on Sunday, it was Scholes' turn to show he can still be lethal at the highest level - capping an outstanding performance with the opener in Wednesday night's 3-0 Barclays Premier League win over Fulham at Old Trafford.

"He was fantastic. Some of his switches of play were magnificent," said Ferguson "These lads are great examples to young players in how they live their life."

He added: "They have kept their ambition, which is important. We are delighted with their performance and are so proud to have them here."

Scholes broke the deadlock in trademark fashion, thanks to a sloppy bit of goalkeeping from Mark Schwarzer who fumbled the volley from Michael Carrick's corner, then helped set up Dimitar Berbatov for the second - before Wayne Rooney tapped home with his first touch to send the Red Devils five points clear of Liverpool.

With Edwin van der Sar already well on the way to a 14th clean sheet that will turn into a European league record if he adds another against Blackburn at Old Trafford on Saturday, United never looked like being beaten once Scholes struck.

Neither is it that obvious how their grip can be prised from an 18th league title.

Evidence of United's squad depth was provided not just by Giggs' omission but also the return of Rooney, brought on after an hour following a seven-match absence with a hamstring injury and promptly scoring United's final goal with his first touch.

"Wayne is 100% now - there is no question about that," added the Red Devils chief.

"He is back, and we hope he stays back. We are at the stage of the season when we don't take chances with any of the players. If you do and exacerbate a problem they can be out for weeks. We don't want that."

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Topics:
#Ryan Giggs
#Fulham
#Mark Schwarzer
#Dimitar Berbatov
#Blackburn Rovers
#Edwin Van der Sar
#Premier League
#Michael Carrick
#Alex
#Derby County
#Manchester United
#Paul Scholes
#Wayne Rooney
#Liverpool
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