“I was never ever made aware of any team coming in for me.”
Paul Scholes has revealed that he only had one offer to leave Manchester United during his time with the club. Inter Milan approached the midfielder.
Scholes played 718 times for the Red Devils in a 20-year career in the first-team.
The gifted midfielder was a key part of Alex Ferguson’s side during the club’s most successful years. As such, he never really had any incentive to leave Old Trafford.
Inter Milan wanted to sign Paul Scholes.
The former Man United midfielder has revealed that he only received one offer to leave the club during his 20-year spell. In 2000, he was contacted about joining Inter Milan.
But Scholes swiftly dismissed the opportunity to join the Italian side, who had players such as Ronaldo, Christian Vieri and Clarence Seedorf at the time. Andrea Pirlo was also on their books, but out on loan at Brescia. While Robbie Keane would briefly join the Milan team that summer.
Scholes’ former teammate Paul Ince had joined Inter from United four years earlier, but he wasn’t interested.
“I never heard anything after that and the manager never said anything to me.”
“I was never ever made aware of any team coming in for me,” Scholes told BBC Five Live.
“I did have one phone call off an agent, Bryan Robson’s old agent, he rang me while we were away at Euro 2000 to ask me if I would be interested in going to Inter Milan.
“But that’s the only phone call I ever had. I never heard anything after that and the manager never said anything to me.”
“I was a Manchester lad, we were winning trophies all the time.”
Between 1993 and 2013, when Scholes retired for the second time, the former England midfielder won 11 Premier League titles, three FA Cups, two Champions Leagues, two League Cups and the Club World Cup.
As he went on to say in the interview, he never really felt he had any reason to leave the Red Devils.
“I was playing at my boyhood club, I was a Manchester lad, we were winning trophies all the time,” Scholes said.
“I was at the biggest club in the world.”
“If the manager said to me that he didn’t want me I would definitely have gone if there was a big club abroad who wanted me.
“But there was never any need to ever think about Barcelona, Real Madrid or AC Milan because I was at the biggest club in the world anyway.
“We didn’t win as many Champions Leagues as we should have but we were every inch as good as those teams, if not better.”
Paul Scholes at Man United.
Scholes was born in Salford, and he was playing for the club he supported as a child. He was also played alongside a close group of friends who all broke into the first-team around the same time – Ryan Giggs, David Beckham, Nicky Butt, Gary and Phil Neville.
He played under the best manager in the club’s history, Ferguson, and alongside some world-class players such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Roy Keane, Eric Cantona and Ruud van Nistelrooy.
It would have been hard to leave this behind and it appears most clubs didn’t even attempt to try to take Scholes from Old Trafford, despite his obvious brilliance.
Although, it would have been interesting to see how he would have fared in Serie A when some of the world’s greatest players were in the league.
(Originally published April 13, 2020).