Yorke defends Scholes’ criticism of Van Gaal and Manchester United

The former Red Devil backed his old teammate in his comments against the Dutchman while also tipping current assistant manager Ryan Giggs to eventually take over in the Old Trafford dugout.

He earned the nickname of 'The Smiling Assassin' because of his supreme goalscoring abilities and his constant smile, but Dwight Yorke and former players of Manchester United have not had much to grin about when discussing the current state of the Red Devils.

That particular statement rang particularly true when Paul Scholes lambasted his former side after United were beaten 2-0 by arch-rivals Liverpool in the Europa League on Friday morning.

The midfielder was vociferous in his opinion in the aftermath of the defeat as he labelled Van Gaal’s side as "shambolic" and “having no plan”.

Speaking to FourFourTwo on the sidelines of a meet-and-greet event arranged by Singtel, Yorke said: “He (Scholes) is entitled to his opinion and I believe that he is frustrated to see the way the team is playing this season.”

Scholes is entitled to his opinion and I believe that he is frustrated to see the way the team is playing this season.

“He is right in saying the team has not performed and at the end of the day though, van Gaal has said before that ex-players won’t intimidate him so I don’t think Scholes’ comment will affect him one bit.”

When Yorke was questioned on whether Scholes would have made similar comment if Sir Alex Ferguson were to be still in charge, the Trinidad and Tobago international was honest in his response.

“If Sir Alex was in charge, the team would not be in the position that they are,” said Yorke, displaying his trademark smile.

“He would have known how to get the best out of his players and he would not have allowed the players to have put the club in that situation.”

Plenty of Van Gaal’s detractors have called for him to be sacked, with former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho widely tipped to take over at the end of the season.

While Yorke stopped short of saying the Dutchman should be dismissed, the former Aston Villa and Sunderland attacker did reveal his choice for the hot seat, if it were to be vacated in the near future.

Giggs, with his knowledge of the club, has been a focal point of United’s success over the last two decades.

The former England striker added: “As much as I am a fan of Mourinho in terms of what he has done and achieved in his career, if you are talking about someone who has the DNA of Manchester United, someone who knows the club inside out, then there is only one candidate and that is Ryan Giggs.”

“Look at world football, with (Zinedane) Zidane at Real Madrid, (Luis) Enrique at Barcelona, Pep (Guardiola) at Manchester City next season and (Mauricio) Pochettino at Tottenham – all of these are ex-players who have being given a chance.

“Giggs, with his knowledge of the club, has been a focal point of United’s success over the last two decades so I don’t see a reason why the next appropriate appointment shouldn’t be him.”

Photos: Weixiang Lim/FourFourTwo