Scholes understands Tevez dilemma

Ex-United star admits he once refused to play during his career

Tevez: Mancini snub rocked City

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Paul Scholes admits he has sympathy for Carlos Tevez over his apparent refusal to play having done so himself at Manchester United.

The ex-England midfielder, who retired this summer, was put on the bench for United's league game at Liverpool in November 2001.

Sir Alex Ferguson agreed to play a League Cup tie at Arsenal the very next day and indicated he was going to pick Scholes amongst an inexperienced line-up.

Scholes appeared as a late substitute in the 3-1 defeat at Liverpool but told Ferguson later that he wouldn't be travelling down to London.

"How I was brave enough and stupid enough to do that I don't know," he said. "I have regretted doing it ever since.

"At the time the first-team players didn't play in the League Cup games and I just felt the manager was messing me about a bit.

"We were leaving that night after the Liverpool game from Stockport train station to go to London. I drove to the station and waited for the manager.


"I know how Carlos feels. He obviously thinks he is being messed about by Roberto Mancini and he probably has a case with the amount of football he has played."

Paul Scholes

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"When his car arrived he wound his window down and I told him I wasn't going. Why on earth I did that I don't know, I was in a stupid frame of mind and felt like he was messing me about. I can't remember what he said back to me, I just got in my car and drove home.

"Probably driving home I thought there was every chance it could be the end of my career with Manchester United, that probably he would get rid of me now. And he was well within his rights to sack me.

"I realised I had done wrong and went to see him and apologised," added the 36-year-old.

"I got fined a week's wages but that was it dealt with. With the manager, once something is dealt with it is out the way."

Tevez refused to come off the bench for neighbours City in Tuesday night's UEFA Champions League defeat at Bayern Munich and has since been suspended by his club, but Scholes can understand his former United team-mate's situation.

Messed about

"I know how Carlos feels," he said. "He obviously thinks he is being messed about by Roberto Mancini and he probably has a case with the amount of football he has played.

"He was their best player last season. And there is no doubt that when Carlos Tevez is in the team, Manchester City are a better side.

"I think Mancini is trying to get his own back on him," Scholes added.

"Carlos has it in his mind he is being messed about as he is not being played. And when you get that in your head, you make strange decisions.

"It is exactly what I did. But it is something he (Tevez) will regret in time. I'm not saying he is right - it's totally up to the manager what he does."