Tearing you apart since 1991! There is no stopping for this man.
Ryan Giggs: the name needs no introduction. This man has history in himself. From witnessing the treble to playing with players like Cantona, Bruce, Robson, McClair and Hughes; Giggsy has seen United at its best!
“We regard it as the biggest and best club in the world but it is still a family club,’’ Giggs said.
Giggs realises that he does not have much playing time left at United. When he was questioned whether this was his last season or not, he replied, “It could be, yes. I’m a similar mindset that I’ve been for the past couple of years: evaluate after Christmas, see how I feel, see what the manager thinks.
“If I’m not enjoying it, if I’m not contributing like I have done in the last couple of years then I’ll finish. I’m 39 in November. I’m not worried by it [retirement]. It’s been coming for a couple of years. But I’m still enjoying it. I still feel I’m contributing to the team.
“I speak to so many players who I played with, Brucey, Robbo, Denis Irwin, and they always say to me, ‘Play as long as you can’. I imagine there’s no substitute for the feeling you get playing, the adrenalin.’’
For a man who has spent almost a lifetime at United, leaving United could be heartbreaking. However, Giggs has other plans.
“When I do finish playing, I’ll try to find the next best thing. Management does interest me. The nearer I get to finishing, the more I think about it. All I can do is prepare myself as best I can for when I do finish. I’ve been doing my coaching courses with Nev [Gary Neville] – levels one two, A-Licence. We’re starting the Pro-Licence next year.”
He was asked about what additions he would make to make a his type of “I’d like a few wingers in there!” he laughed. Giggs listens a lot to Fergie and is storing ideas for the future.
“I’ve learnt from the master here,’’ said Giggs, admiring how SAF has made this club the “family club”. “It all comes from the manager. You see him joking with all the staff in canteen. He knows every schoolboy’s name who comes in during the holidays, every apprentice’s name. It still fascinates me how he still does that.’’
He still feels a that there is a continuation of legacy. “There is still that nucleus of coaching staff. Mick Phelan was an ex-player. Rene Meulensteen has been here a long time. The medical department have been there a long time.
“Players like me, Scholesy, Nev, even Rio and Wayne, have all been here a long time. It’s keeping that nucleus really, recognising the DNA of Manchester United. We regard it as the biggest and best club in the world but it is still a family club.
“The fans here want to see young players coming through which is massive in the history of Manchester United. It gets harder and harder each year because the bar gets raised. There’s a bit of pressure of having the time to see players through and not just buying the best.”
Indeed, it would be a pleasure for any team to have a man like Giggs and its management. Whether he joins this year or the next is a question that only time could answer.