Happy birthday, Ryan Giggs!

It definitely doesn't feel that way...but Ryan Giggs is 40, and he is still going strong. If you happened to watch the game where United just trash Bayern Leverkusen 5-0 in Germany, you will find it hard to believe Giggs is 40. His passes were amazing and it was with his presence, together with Kagawa and Rooney that United looked unstoppable, playing in Germany, against the club who stand in 2nd position in the Bundesliga. 

The man, who made the first of his many appearances (953 to be exact) for Manchester United in March 1991 as a 17 year old celebrate his 40th birthday today. Giggs had won 13 league titles, 2 champions league, 4 FA Cups, and 4 League Cups. 




There was a time before Giggs, when everyone is searching for the next "George Best"....It would typically follow one decent cross or mazy run from a callow youth, who would then be hailed as the player to lead United to glory once again. 

In 1991, people around the club knew about Ryan Giggs and were expectant when he debuted in the first team. Still, there was much to prove. 

Two years later, Giggs was a first-team regular and had already won the PFA Young Player of the Year award. But the glory of a first league title since 1967 continued to elude the club. 

In January 1993, with United leading Queens Park Rangers 1-0, Giggs rushed on to a long Denis Irwin punt forward, before outsprinting two defenders and lobbing the onrushing goalkeeper. It was a moment of outrageous skill, balance and panache. And it was then that United fans realised what they had been hoping for all along. They wouldn’t need a new George Best, they had Ryan Giggs. The first Premier League title duly followed in May, with another coming a year later.

Well, it would be almost impossible to talk about all the fine performance by Ryan Giggs, probably the best player ever seen in English football...but one that stand out from the rest would be the 1999 FA Cup Semi Final against Arsenal...

Giggs' wonder goal
Who better to tell the story than the man himself, who looked back at the goal in "Giggs – the Autobiography" (2005, Penguin Books Ltd):

"… I fastened on to a loose pass from [Patrick] Vieira, ten yards or so inside our own half. I'm told the gaffer was on his feet, screaming for me to run at Lee Dixon, but in all the din I wasn't aware of that. 

"It would be nice to say that I had it all in my head, what I was going to do, but it doesn’t happen like that. It unfolds too quickly to think. Instead, instinct and feel take over. It seemed to pan out in slow motion. When Vieira tried to get back at me I just dipped my shoulder and went past him, then others came and went the same way until I was in the box.


"Dixon and [Tony] Adams tried to get to me, but I got away from them, and then I'm up against David Seaman. Now I did pause for a millisecond and thought, 'Just hit it.; And I did, firing the ball up past the England goalkeeper and into the roof of the net. It was the kind of amazing finish you dream about."

Giggs was up against Vieira, Lee Dixon, Tony Adams, David Seaman, all of them...top class defenders and goalkeeper...but he was unstoppable at that time, just like the many times now, even when he played against players who are much younger than him. 

The player will play beyond 40 years old....

Happy Birthday to one of the finest player in United and English football! 

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