Paul Scholes is back for Manchester United
Manchester United's Paul Scholes (C) warms up with team mates before their FA Cup soccer match against Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, northern England January 8, 2012. REUTERS

Martin Keown believes the return of Paul Scholes will provide Manchester United with a major boost this season given Sir Alex Ferguson's well-documented problems in midfield.

The 37-year-old made a shock return to Manchester United on Sunday, when the Old Trafford hero came out of retirement to take up a place on the bench during the FA Cup third round.

The aforementioned former Highbury hero, who faced Scholes on countless occasions during their overlapping careers, believes Manchester United will inevitably benefit from the Old Trafford legend's obvious pedigree.

Keown believes Manchester United's reluctance to make any lavish statements in the January transfer window suggests their decision to recall Scholes from retirement makes perfect sense despite some who have intimated it highlights United's desperation.

"A lot of people will wonder why Manchester United have brought back Paul Scholes, but it is a good move." The former England international told the Daily Mail.

"(Manchester) United know they have a weakness in midfield and can't get the right player in at such short notice.

"They haven't replaced Scholes since he retired but it is easy for him to reintegrate. It was a big call to play him in such a big game but it shows the faith Sir Alex Ferguson has in him."

Scholes appeared for Manchester United as a second half substitute, and although his mistake resulted in Sergio Aguero's goal, the evergreen midfielder generally displayed the unnerving ball retention that has epitomised his remarkable career.

According to Opta, the Manchester United icon made more passes than any Manchester City player in the entire game and completed 97% of them.