Paul Scholes criticises 'strange' Erik ten Hag decision during Chelsea draw
Paul Scholes questioned Erik ten Hag’s ‘strange’ decision to replace Jadon Sancho with Fred during Manchester United’s 1-1 draw against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
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The Dutchman’s game plan showed early signs of promise on Saturday as United controlled the early exchanges but failed to make their dominance count with Marcus Rashford and Antony spurning clear cut opportunities.
Ten Hag’s counterpart Graham Potter responded by making an early tactical change in the 35th minute, replacing Marc Cucurella with Mateo Kovacic, a decision which helped reverse the momentum and allowed Chelsea gain a foothold in the game.
The Dutchman eventually responded seven minutes into the second period by removing Sancho and introducing Fred, who had been dropped to bench despite his influential display against Spurs in midweek.
Scholes, however, felt the substitution backfired and had a negative impact on Bruno Fernandes who had been pulling the strings during the first half.
‘Today they were good for half a game they were really good and probably deserved to win the game,’ Scholes told Premier League Productions.
‘You think of Chelsea being at home, did they do enough to win the game I really don’t think they did.
‘The subs were a little bit strange today. I thought Fred coming on when he did for Sancho didn’t really help the game. I thought Fernandes lost a bit of control of the game he had to come out to the left-hand side and wasn’t in the game as much.’
United were eventually rescued by Casemiro’s towering injury time header and although Scholes sees signs of progress, he believes United must learn how to dominate away from home against their biggest rivals if they are to take the next step forward in their evolution under Ten Hag.
He added: ‘I think there’s progress going to a big team and getting a point is progress. You’d like to win those games still, of course you would but really looking back on the game they should have won it.
‘There will be bigger tests ahead, going to Anfield going to Arsenal, going to these better teams. It’s now a big test for them to take that next level.
‘I think they’ve sorted out problems at home those first two games were disastrous as we know, but they’ve sorted the problems out at home, they look dominant it’s that away form which I think that manager wants them to be.’
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