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'I have left myself wide open' - Scholes expects scrutiny from Mourinho

The new Oldham Athletic manager was critical of the ex-Manchester United boss while acting as a pundit.

New Oldham Athletic manager Paul Scholes.
New Oldham Athletic manager Paul Scholes.

NEW OLDHAM ATHLETIC boss Paul Scholes anticipates Jose Mourinho taking a keen interest in how he fares in management, having often criticised the Portuguese as a television pundit.

The former England and Manchester United midfielder has made his first foray into management with the League Two side, who he supported as a boy.

Scholes retired from playing in 2013, having spent his entire career at Old Trafford, and he initially moved into punditry.

It was in that role that he lambasted Mourinho’s time at United, with the 44-year-old accusing him of “embarrassing the club” before he was sacked in December.

Mourinho once said he hoped Scholes would be “25% as successful as myself” if he ever went into management, though the new Oldham boss is not expecting to see the Portuguese at any League Two matches soon.

“I think he will be watching results,” Scholes said at a news conference. “Whether he will be watching the games, I am not too sure. That is part of the thing that bugged me a little bit. I wanted to get into it anyway but I have left myself wide open.

“I have been quite critical. I don’t think we will get many pundits watching but if we are losing games I am sure people will be popping up.

“They can say what they want. I have never really understood why players and managers take notice of what pundits say anyway. They are just giving an opinion on the game and get paid for doing so.

“If anyone wants to have a dig at me, I won’t be taking any notice. The only person I answer to is the owner.”

Scholes is the latest player from Alex Ferguson’s United sides to move into management, following in the footsteps of ex-colleagues like Gary Neville, Ryan Giggs and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. And Scholes admits he will ring Ferguson if he requires any advice. 

“I’d speak to anyone, yeah. I’m sure the gaffer is on the other end of the phone,” he added. “He’ll want me to do well and if I need any help from him, I’ll be ringing him.”

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