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"Scholesy is a top, top player. You saw against Portsmouth what he can do, and he seemed to fit in like he has never been away."

- Michael Carrick
31/01/2008 07:19, Report by Ben Hibbs

Carrick glad Scholes is back

Michael Carrick was pleased to see Paul Scholes back pulling the strings in the middle of the park, even if it does mean more competition for places in midfield.

Scholes made his first start in over three months since damaging knee ligaments in October - his 550th appearance in total - and looked as sharp as ever, orchestrating United’s attacking moves in the 2-0 win over Portsmouth.

For Carrick, Owen Hargreaves, Anderson and Darren Fletcher, it could mean less playing time, but none of them look on the 33-year-old’s return to action as anything other than positive.

“It’s great to have Scholesy back,” Carrick told MUTV. “We have been getting good results without him in the team, so to have him back now is a boost to everyone.

“He’s a top, top player. You saw against Portsmouth what he can do, and he seemed to fit in like he has never been away. It’s great to see him back.”

Carrick insists that all five central midfielders at Old Trafford must not count the word ‘dropped’ as part of their football vocabulary.

“Every one of the midfielders is playing really well,” he says. “But we all know that we’re not going to play in every single game. But it’s not a case of getting dropped, it’s about resting players and keep everyone in top shape and in good form. That’s certainly the case at the moment. Hopefully we can all stay sharp for the run-in, that will only help us.”

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