Paul Scholes Slams David de Gea Performance in UCL Defeat

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paul scholes

Manchester United club legend Paul Scholes wasn’t known for being too colorful with the media during his playing days, but in his second career has a pundit, he’s often been rather candid. Often quite critical of current figures who are prominent at the club, Scholesy has now hit out hard at United’s No. 1 David de Gea.

It was a rough go for De Gea last night, as he conceded twice to RB Leipzig in the first 13 minutes. United battled back, eventually, but they only had one single shot on goal for the first 70+ minutes.

paul scholes

De Gea’s easly mistakes cost the side dearly, and they fell 3-2 in Champions League group stage finale. They are now consigned to the Europa League competiton. Scholes said that De Gea “bottled it” last night, and that the goalkeeper’s performance was hindered by fear of getting hurt.

Scholes was particularly critical of the third goal, by Justin Kluivert, which proved to be the game winner.

“David De Gea here… he bottles it,” Scholes said while commentating for BT Sport.

“He’s scared of getting hurt. It should never go across the box like that. As a goalkeeper, you come out, make yourself as big as you can. You might get smashed in the face, you might get injured… but he turns his back away.”

david de gea

“He actually makes himself smaller. For such an experienced goalkeeper, it’s criminal.”

Maybe De Gea wasn’t quite ready to play last night? He missed out on the weekend win at West Ham due to injury, and perhaps he was playing tentative/a bit afraid of getting hurt again? Maybe he was physically match fit, but not mentally 100% yet?

The United supporters calling for him to be replaced by Dean Henderson certainly got more backing to their arguments last night. However, there is plenty of blame to go around, it’s not just De Gea responsible for Tuesday night’s debacle and elimination.

The UCL campaing began with such great promise, as United won at PSG 2-1, getting a victory in what was, on paper at least, their toughest group stage game. It was supposed to be all easier from there, but then again no one ever expected United to get upset by Istanbul Basaksehir either.

david de gea

And a United side that thrashed Leipzig 5-0 in the reverse fixture, couldn’t even manage a draw in Germany, which was all they needed to go through.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank, partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” has regularly appeared in WGNSports IllustratedChicago Tribune and SB NationFollow him on Twitter and Instagram.

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