Lee Sharpe tells brilliant story about young Paul Scholes at Man United
It's fair to suggest that Paul Scholes was forced to overcome the genetic odds on his way to becoming perhaps the most talented English midfielder of his generation.
As a youngster, Scholes was much smaller and frailer in stature than most of his contemporaries in the Manchester United youth ranks. He was also less athletic, as well as being short-sighted and ever so slightly asthmatic too.
It would appear that the United academy hierarchy also had their doubts, with Lee Sharpe divulging as much while reeling off a smashing anecdote about Scholes' youth career on BT Sports "Football Tonight" show on Friday evening.
Sharpe revealed that while he and fellow senior players Bryan Robson, Steve Bruce, Peter Schmeichel and Brian McClair were watching the United youth team, a coach expressed his reservations about giving a contract to the "little red-head in midfield" -- only for him to immediately go and make up their minds for them.
"The senior pros -- Robson, Bruce, Schmeichel, McClair -- always used to watch the third team, which was then the A team, and Scholes was playing," Sharpe recounted.
"Robson turns to the manager and says, 'Who are you keeping, who are you letting go?' and he obviously said, 'We're keeping Beckham, Butt, Neville, this lad, this lad, this lad's going, and we're not sure about the little red-head in midfield.'
"Then Scholesy gets the ball on the edge of the box, fakes to shoot and drags it, defender slides past him, fakes to shoot again and drags it, and another midfielder slides past him, shuffles between the two centre-halves, fakes to shoot, keeper goes down onto one knee and Scholesy scoops it and dinks it into the bottom corner.
"And Robson turns to the manager and went, 'Are you sure you know what you're talking about?'"
We believe that's what's known in the business as "letting your feet do the talking."