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Old 04-01-2008   #1
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Default Scholes praises 'amazing' Ronaldo

Paul Scholes has seen plenty during his 14 years as a Manchester United FC player but he believes Cristiano Ronaldo tops the lot.

Stands alone
The 33-year-old midfielder began his United career in the same youth team as David Beckham before graduating to the senior ranks in 1994, during an era when Eric Cantona was the darling of Old Trafford. Yet Scholes says winger Ronaldo, scorer of 35 goals in all competitions this season, deserves to stand alone for his "amazing" contribution.

'Cristiano at the top'
"I think I've been quite lucky to have played with a lot of top, top players," said Scholes. "Cristiano has to be at the top now, purely for what he has done this season. To score the amount of goals he has done from his position has been nothing short of amazing. It is not just that – it's his making of chances as well and the threat he poses to other teams."

Best form
One of life's shy souls, Scholes has always been happy to see the attention deflected elsewhere but his own contribution to United's superb recent run should not be overlooked. Since returning from a knee ligament injury in late January, Scholes has gradually rediscovered his best form, a point his manager Sir Alex Ferguson acknowledged on the eve of the UEFA Champions League quarter-final visit to AS Roma. "He has been out for three and a half months, but now we can see the form coming back and we are delighted with him because, as you know, he is one of the great players," said the Scot.

Barcelona bow
Scholes is expected to make his 99th appearance in the UEFA Champions League at the Stadio Olimpico and says he is looking forward to it as much as he did his first, a 2-2 draw against FC Barcelona on 19 October 1994. "It's a competition that everybody wants to win and every game is massive, especially at this stage. I look forward to it now as if it was my first game," said the former England player.

Source: UEFA

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