Giggs, truly United legend

Well, it must be crazy when we talk about Ryan Giggs. It has been so long that time does not seem to impact him in any way.

When Giggs broke the ranks into United first team, there were players like Bryan Robson, Denis Irwin, Lee Sharpe and Brian McClaire were still with United. That was about 20 plus years ago...some of these players are not recognized by the people of my generation, football fans even.

Giggs, United legend



Then, he was there when Eric Cantona, the King came to United. And he was not just there, but also a key player alongside Eric Cantona, Paul Ince and Mark Hughes. He was hailed as the first football star to capture the public imagination in a way unseen since the days of George Best.

 

The irony here is that Best and Bobby Charlton used to describe Giggs as their favourite young player. The two even turn up at The Cliff training ground just to watch him play.

Later on, Giggs was joined by another group of young key players at United, Gary Neville, Phil Neville, Nicky Butt, David Beckham and Paul Scholes. Beckham took over from Andrei Kanchelskis on the right wing and Butt succeeded Paul Ince in central midfield to complete a new look United midfield along with Giggs and Roy Keane. Then, we have players like Solskjaer in the team with Giggs. This was the generation that win the Treble.

After that, it was another generation of players arising from United...players like Ronaldo, Rooney, Nani, Anderson, Park Ji-sung, Carrick and many others....players come and go but Giggs is still here for United. No doubt about that, he is the most decorated and probably the best player ever seen in United. I might even say he is the best in the English football.

 

But I guess all that are about to come to an end....with so many of the players of his generation opting for retirement finally, many suspected it was about time for Giggs as well. He signed another year of professional football with Manchester United and will also act as a coach under Moyes.

"Crazy, aren't I?" the 39-year-old said. "I'm enjoying it just as much as I did 20 years ago. It's as simple as that. Every year is a bonus to me. Take last year: winning the league, that feeling you have after the hard work you put in. Winning that trophy makes it all worthwhile.

"I am excited about it [coaching] personally and it has worked well so far. But it is about getting the balancing act right because I am still playing. There is not a big emphasis on coaching at the moment.

"The manager likes to coach and there is Jim Lumsden, Steve Round and Phil Neville. It is more looking behind the scenes and seeing how everything works.

"It is completely different from playing. Even though I have been playing for 20-odd years, I am seeing the other side of it; how you prepare for games. Some things I knew, others I didn't. It has been a real education."

While Moyes seem to be cautious about injury on players during the pre-season, it seems that Giggs is pretty confident despite his age. That is really all the good sign United need to look at for another good season.

Giggs on Sir Alex Ferguson's retirement...

"It is strange for someone like myself, who has known him for so long," he said. "It's different, but you just get on with it. It is important to look forward, not back. This is the start of the journey this season and I hope to be lifting a trophy again at the end of it."



 

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