Scholes agrees with Van Gaal about lack of balance at United
Manchester United legend Paul Scholes agrees with new manager Louis van Gaal that the squad he inherited from former boss David Moyes is unbalanced.
Van Gaal recently described his squad as a quality group of players, but insisted they had been left "broken" by their failings under Moyes last season.
And speaking at an event in Oldham to promote prostrate cancer awareness, Scholes said he agrees with the Dutchman’s assessment, adding the loss of left-back Patrice Evra is a significant one.
"He said it himself and the squad looks unbalanced to me," Scholes said.
"They have a number of number tens, with Juan Mata, Shinji Kagawa and Adnan Januzaj, and Ander Herrera looks more like a number ten than a central midfield player.
"Tom Cleverely you could argue is a number ten as well, so there is a lot of those type of players but they are struggling a little bit for defenders.
"Phil Jones, Chris Smalling and Jonny Evans are the only recognised defenders. He said he likes Michael Keane and Tyler Blackett who are up and coming, but his priority will be defenders.
"If you look at the first three lads I mentioned they don’t have great injury records as well. They don’t seem to play as many games as the likes of Rio (Ferdinand), Vidic (Nemanja) and Evra (Patrice) who have been the cornerstone of the defence for the last ten years.
"If you take them out, especially Evra with the left-back situation with a young lad like Luke Shaw coming in on a big money move, there will be a lot of pressure on him.
"I think it would have been nice for Patrice to stay and guide him through that, but I can understand Patrice’s side of the coin as well – he wants to play football.
"There are big losses there but there are young defenders there, and if they stay fit I think they will do well."
Scholes also has no problem with Van Gaal’s straight-talking approach in the wake of the Dutchman’s public comments over Shaw’s lack of fitness.
"If they don’t like it then tough," Scholes said. "I think it’s the best way to be when a player knows where they stand it’s always better than being a bit unsure.
"Does the manager like me or does he not like me? It seems with this man you’ll know either way, and that can only be a good thing."
The former Manchester United midfielder can also see the Dutchman sticking with the 3-4-3 formation that van Gaal has used during pre-season.
"He has played many different systems with whatever club he has been with," said Scholes.
"With Ajax, Barcelona and Bayern Munich he could play any system but I think when he has had a look at these players this is the system that he feels is best to cope with the squad.
"I think it’s designed to get his forward players in, he likes to get his two forwards Van Persie and Rooney and the number ten, which has been Mata in.
"When you have got the quality of these players in your team you can only score goals – if he can work any system around those three then United fans are in for a good season and an entertaining season with a lot of goals."