Man United news

Scholes defends tackling

October 4, 2011
By ESPN staff

Former Manchester United star Paul Scholes has disputed his reputation as a bad tackler, revealing revenge was behind a lot of his aggressive challenges.

Paul Scholes
GettyImagesManchester United's Paul Scholes sees red after a collision with City's Pablo Zabaleta

Scholes, who retired at the end of last season, was considered by many a wonderful footballer but his tackling ability was always a point of debate.

The 36-year-old picked up 145 yellow cards for club and country between 1994 and 2011 and was given his marching orders 10 times during his career. Despite becoming notorious for his bad tackling, Scholes does not accept criticism of his unique defensive style, claiming he only over-stepped the mark when he was "getting people back".

"Of course I can tackle. There's plenty of evidence of being able to tackle," he told BBC Radio Five Live. "I was just getting people back. If someone got me early in the game it was always in the back of my mind that I needed to get them back. I didn't always do it on purpose, some of it was just bad timing, I suppose.

"But I think throughout my career the record wasn't that bad, there were not that many yellow cards. Well, I suppose a few yellow cards, but not many sendings-off. But I think towards the end every time I made one tackle I got booked, because of my reputation."