Paul Scholes reveals ‘worrying’ theory on why Raphael Varane has been dropped | Football


Raphael Varane has fallen down the pecking order at Manchester United (Picture: Getty Images)

Harry Maguire and Jonny Evans have been playing in front of Raphael Varane because Erik ten Hag thinks they are the better options on the ball, believes Manchester United legend Paul Scholes.

In an unpredictable season so far for the Red Devils, no one would have expectedMaguire and Evans to emerge as regular partners in the middle of defence.

This has partly been down to injury, with Lisandro Martinez sidelined until at least Christmas, but Maguire and Evans started against FC Copenhagen on Wednesday with Varane and Victor Lindelof on the bench.

Varane was on the bench in recent Premier League meetings with Manchester City and Fulham, with Ten Hag saying his defensive selection in the Manchester derby simply being down to tactics.

Scholes reckons it is a simple reason why the Englishman and the Northern Irishman have been playing and that is they are superior in trying to play with the ball at the back, something that the former England midfielder feels is a worrying state of affairs.

‘I actually think he’s playing Maguire and Evans at centre-half because he thinks they’re the two best ball-playing centre-halves,’ Scholes told TNT Sports. ‘Which in itself is a bit of a worry.’

Scholes also feels the form of Varane has not been good enough, understanding why Ten Hag has doubts over some of his big name players.

Manchester United v Brentford FC - Premier League

Harry Maguire and Jonny Evans are the unlikely partnership of choice for Ten Hag (Picture: Getty Images)

‘How can he pick a settled back four?’ Scholes questioned. ‘We saw Varane play against Galatasaray and he was all over the place.

‘He must be thinking: “If I can’t rely on somebody like Varane…” Even Casemiro when he played he looked a bit loose and not playing his position well.

‘These are two players who have won the European Cup five times [Varane has won four], if you can’t rely on these type of players, where do you go? You can see where he’s gone, back to Jonny Evans who was a free transfer!’

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