Paul Scholes has developed a niche for himself as a football pundit.
It’s clear that he still struggles to criticise Manchester United but when he does decide to let rip, he doesn’t hold back.
It means you don’t really know what you’re going to get from the ex-United midfielder. He can launch into a tirade at any moment, and often when you least expect it.
Things are obviously easier for Scholes when United are scoring goals and winning matches. They scored, and won, against Zorya Luhansk on Thursday night, but they certainly struggled. So much so that they incurred the former England international’s wrath in the BT studio.
But before we get to Scholes’ comments about United’s woeful attack, we can’t dismiss his claim that rivals Liverpool can win the league.
Robbie Savage made the same claim recently but it just feels different coming from Scholes’ mouth. A United legend admitting Liverpool, one of the Red Devils’ most despised opponents, can be champions? No, we couldn’t believe Scholes said it, either.
But he did. There’s video proof and everything.
“Liverpool look like they're a team who can win the league," Scholes says. "I think it's a big test for United to go there [on October 17] and try and get something out of the game.
"I think they'd take a draw now. I was a little bit worried about them defensively but you have to say, the attacking quality they're showing at the minute, they look like they're going to score goals against anybody.”
Man United fans react
Of course, Scholes’ fellow pundit and Liverpool hero Michael Owen was delighted to hear the 35-year-old’s admission.
“I'll leave Scholesy to continue drooling over Liverpool," Owen said.
Scholes tried to make up for it by saying: “I hope they don’t [win the league],” but by that point the damage was already done.
Struggles in the final third
Like many, Scholes is thoroughly impressed with Liverpool’s potency. Jurgen Klopp’s side have scored 16 goals in six Premier League games and eight in two EFL Cup wins.
Compare that to United’s profligate attack against Zorya and it’s no wonder Scholes is afraid.
“One shot on target probably sums it up,” he continued. “They gave United problems on the break.
"United won which is the most important thing, and there were some bits of good play, but the quality in the final third wasn’t what you’d normally associate with this team."
Liverpool may fall short in their attempt to win the title. But the fact that Scholes realises it’s a possibility points to much progress.
Can Liverpool win the league? Give us your thoughts in the comments section below!
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