Manchester United saw off Partizan Belgrade 3-0 at Old Trafford to progress into the knockout stages of the Europa League.
There were some hairy early moments and a drop off late on, but the evening’s work should have lifted the mood around Old Trafford.
On BT Sport, United legend Paul Scholes was busy selecting his preferred eleven after the comfortable victory.
Who did Scholes select?
Scholes elected for a 4-4-1-1 formation, which he described as a ‘Manchester United way’.
David de Gea unsurprisingly got the nod to play behind Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Harry Maguire.
Academy graduate Axel Tuanzebe would line up ahead of Victor Lindelof for Scholes, who remains ‘not convinced’ about the Swede. Luke Shaw completes his ideal back four, but has not been fit since August.
Paul Pogba is selected as part of a deep midfield pair alongside Scott McTominay, a combination Ole Gunnar Solskjaer must wait until December to field.
Daniel James and Mason Greenwood get the nod on the wings, with Scholes clearly impressed with the latter’s opening goal last night.
That means that Marcus Rashford is shoehorned into a number ten role he has never played in for United, with Anthony Martial leading the line.
What has Scholes got right and wrong?
Lindelof had a great season in 2018/19, but has been shaky this term and Tuanzebe’s performances, especially against Arsenal, make a compelling case for his inclusion.
But perhaps if there is to be an academy graduate in the back four, it should be Brandon Williams, whose energy and drive has caught the eye this term.
In midfield, Pogba has struggled throughout his United career to play in a duo as he doesn’t do enough defensively and can’t get enough creative freedom.
Meanwhile, the selection of Rashford as a number ten is questionable, given his lack of experience in the role. It’s just a case of Scholes trying to shoehorn in as many attacking players as possible and reacting to an impressive Greenwood display by throwing him into the mix.
Rashford should continue on the left, with Pogba reintroduced as the number ten whenever he comes back, with Greenwood and Daniel James rotating on the right.
On the back of a comfortable 3-0 home win, Scholes has selected a side to get on the front foot but it would struggle defensively, and do little to ease concerns away from home.
Scholes did say he’d rather Rashford play on the left, and even United’s lack of a reliable number ten shouldn’t change his role, especially at a time when he’s coming into form.
United have qualified with the Europa League with two games to spare, and there’s a home game against Colchester in the cup to come, so if Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wishes to experiment, he has a few opportunities if he dares follow Scholes’ suggestion.
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