All the young lads love the club and want to stay here. When you come from the area it means so much more. We know what Manchester United means to so many people and we all want to be there as long as we can. I have been here for nine years, since I left school at 16. I am 25 now and getting old but I don’t think I will be getting a testimonial for a while. However, I would like to be here until I finish playing and I think it is the same for all the young lads who have come through. You do get frightened that one day they might snatch their hand off but we are certainly at least on a par with any other club. These days, there aren’t many players who stay at one club. They are all off making all the money, turning up one year here and then somewhere else. But we all want to stay together and be part of a successful United for years to come. Me, Becks, Nicky, Ryan, the Nevilles – we all feel the same. No one wants to be part of the side that goes on a bad run – it is inside us. The manager is always talking of hunger and we feel as hungry as ever. We all know what others think of United and we want them to hate us more. The more they do that, the more it means we are winning things. All the young lads want as many medals and trophies as we can – another Treble would be nice!
Paul Scholes on wanting to stay at United (August 2000).
I decided to call it a day with England because it just wasn’t any fun any more. I don’t know why it became like that, I’d just stopped enjoying it. I like being at home as well there was an awful lot of time away from home and my family and for me there’s nowhere better than Manchester.
Paul Scholes on why he quit England.
I really can’t imagine playing anywhere else and I don’t want to either. It’s never been something that’s interested me at all so it’s never become an issue really. Obviously in football you never know and there may come a time when the manager doesn’t want you any more and you have to go. But that would be the only reason that I would leave.
Paul Scholes on being a one club man.
I am 34 in November and hope to still be playing when I am 35. Anything after that will be a bonus. As long as I still feel I am contributing to United, I will carry on.
Paul Scholes, 33, on the future.
I actually didn’t realise it was four years between winning the league. But I certainly did not think it was over during that fallow period. Manchester United is a major club. OK, we were probably not as close as we would have liked to have been but I never thought we would not win it again and the manager did not let us think that way either. At a club like this, you always think you will get it right one year. We managed to do that by beating Chelsea in 2007 and we have gone on to win it again and again.
Paul Scholes on so-called “United decline”.
It was quite special, playing for Manchester United is a big thing. I’m still enjoying it as much as ever, probably more than I have done. The last few games I’ve gone well and managed to get forward, get some chances and it’s a good feeling. It’s just another game we needed to win to stay at the top of the table. People have milestones all the time and we were just concentrating on winning the game and that’s what we managed to do.
Paul Scholes on reaching 500 games for Manchester United, against Liverpool, where he scored a goal.
Sometimes it is difficult when you are swapped about. It is frustrating going into a game not knowing where you will be playing. I have been on the right, left, in the middle and up front. It has been awkward – but you have to get on with it. I have scored a few goals but my performances have not been anywhere near as good as last year.
Ahead of his retirement, Paul Scholes on Sven’s England tactics .
The league is the major trophy, your bread and butter.
Paul Scholes on United’s priority.
I have stayed here because it’s the best club. I’m from Manchester, so why would I want to move? As long as the manager wants me I have wanted to stay. How can I be bored of winning trophies? Bored of winning games every week, or most weeks? Who can get bored of that?
Paul Scholes on why he spend a career with United.
I don’t think they can be classed as a main rival. Our main rivals are obviously Arsenal and Chelsea. I think City are just a rival because of where they are geographically. Liverpool is the same. With them getting the money, it has probably helped us and spurred us on a bit more when we have played them. There has been nothing to choose between us in the last five or six games. They will obviously be pissed off that they have only managed to beat us once [under Sheikh Mansour’s ownership]. We have nicked the games with goals in the last minutes. I’ve done it, Michael Owen’s done it and Wayne Rooney did it last season. That’s maybe the difference between the two teams.
Paul Scholes on City as rivals.
You never think about leaving but you always know there is a chance it might happen. Circumstances change – you don’t want to be hanging about if you are not playing well, can’t get into the team and find yourself as a substitute every week. But at the moment I am happy where I am and in an ideal world I would like to stay with Manchester United for the rest of my career. The problem is ideals don’t always become reality. David leaving hasn’t made me feel more vulnerable, it’s part of the game. Not many players stay with one club throughout their career. It’s something you get used to and we will carry on as normal, just as we have when other players have gone before. This is the strongest midfield we have had since I’ve been here. There are more players for a start and that keeps everybody on their toes. You know you have to play well to stay in the team because there are two or three who could come in and take your place if you have a bad game.
Paul Scholes after David Beckham’s departure in 2003.
The challenge will always be to get the next one. This one is out of the way now. We will celebrate it today, have a nice summer, then think about winning the next one. Reaching 19 titles is not something you ever think about. All you want to do is win something. To go on like we have done is a great achievement. Now we want to stretch our lead even more.
Paul Scholes on making it 20.
It’s a big competition and we want to win. But obviously, we’d probably rather be here, playing our league game and not have so many fixtures in January like we’ve got. It’s one of those things. We managed to win the European Cup last year and sometimes afterwards you have to do things maybe you don’t want to do.
Paul Scholes on competing in the FIFA World Club Cup.
I am not a man of many words but I can honestly say that playing football is all I have ever wanted to do and to have had such a long and successful career at Manchester United has been a real honour. This was not a decision that I have taken lightly but I feel now is the right time for me to stop playing. To have been part of the team that helped the club reach that 19th title is a great privilege. I would like to thank the fans for their tremendous support throughout my career, I would also like to thank all the coaches and players that I have worked with over the years, but most of all I would like to thank Sir Alex for being such a great manager, from the day I joined the club his door has always been open and I know this team will go on to win many more trophies under his leadership.
Paul Scholes on his retirement.