One of my favorite footballers of all time, Paul Scholes, yesterday played his 500th match for my team Manchester United.
'Scholesy' as he is affectionately known by all Man United fans, epitomizes for me everything good about professional football and about getting the priorities right. He never seeks publicity, in fact, he positively avoids it.
That does not mean Paul is not passionate about what he does as can be seen in the picture (above) after scoring the first goal in a 2-0 win for Man United yesterday over old rivals Liverpool. Click here for report
He has often been quoted as saying he is only interested in playing football for Manchester United, doing the job he paid for, and then going home to his family. He recently retired from international football for England (more’s the pity) because he wants to devote time to his family.
We live in a time when many very well paid (many would say overpaid) footballers seem to seek publicity and the bright lights lifestyle. These types act and live the lifestyle of celebrities to the full and that of course is a choice they make individually. That choice brings with it the personal responsibility for the image created and the flack such footballers receive from the media when things go ‘pear shaped’ in their celebrity lifestyle.
I think it is wonderful to see a role model like Paul Scholes emerge. To me Scholesy PROVES that a footballer who does not want to attract publicity can achieve that. It follows in my opinion that those footballers who get publicity must SEEK it. Avoiding or attracting publicity is a DECISION in other words. Paul Scholes has proved that.
Long live Paul Scholes as a Manchester United player. He has been loyal to United - his only club since he was in his early teens and now at 31 he obviously still loves it just as much as he always has.
He just wants to play football and care for his family – well done Scholesy - simplicity personified