In this edition of the From the Archives, we take a look at the greatest moments of arguably United’s greatest ever player – Ryan Giggs.
A Premier League icon, Giggs’ terrorized defences with a bag full of tricks, pace, an out of the world sense about the game and the uncanny ability to pop up in the right place at the right time. Bursting onto the scene as a skinny teenager back in the early nineties. In the course of his long career, Giggs built up his reputation as the most decorated player in English football history and built up a vast array of memorable moments.
A DEBUT TO REMEMBER
With United struggling to replace the departed Jesper Olsen on the left having signed Ralph Milne. United turned to Ryan Giggs to provide an answer and gave him the chance against Everton in the League. United ended up winning 2-0 but Giggs did not hog the headlines like he would so often later on in his career.
The debut I’m talking about is his the one in the Manchester Derby. Still just a teenager, it was Giggs who settled the tie. It was a scrappy goal at best and some even contested that it should have counted as an own goal. But this one for the history books.
THE YOUTH FA TRIUMPH SEASON
Like many of those players who broke into the first team from the youth squads of that season, the FA Youth Cup triumph would hold a special place in Ryan Giggs’ heart. The 1991-92 season saw Giggs become a feature in matchday squads but he still remained very much involved in the reserves. He captained a side that had future legends in Scholes, Beckham, the Neville’s, and Butt. The formed the spine of the team that secured the FA Youth Cup in 1992. That season was the final season of the erstwhile First Division when United finished runners’ up to Leeds. Giggs claimed the PFA Young Player of the Year Award that year.
THE GOALS AGAINST QPR AND SPURS
While not iconic moments, the two goals against Tottenham and Queens Park Rangers highlighted Giggs’ ability to take players on and beat them. Both goals showcased Giggs’ ability to turn to his bag of tricks and bountiful of pace to beat defenders and the keeper with finishes so cool one would think he was a veteran of a handful of campaigns.
GOAL V ARSENAL
Arguably the most iconic goal in FA Cup history. Definitely the greatest goal of his long career. In the extra time of a restless replay against Arsenal in the FA Cup semi final saw Giggs pick the ball of a misplaced pass from Patrick Viera in his own half. Giggs embarked on a run that took him past 5 players and beat the goalkeeper with a thunderous strike into the roof of the net. It is sage to say that the following celebration was as iconic as the goal itself.
Ryan Giggs took David Moyes’ place in the Old Trafford dugout after the latter was fired following a dismal season. United appointed Ryan Giggs as the interim manager for the final four games of the season.
United won twice, drew once and lost another as Giggs’ ensured United ended the season on a high. In his managerial debut, United played attacking football as the club saw off Norwich by 4-0. He also turned out against Hull City and rolled back the years with a few tricks and feints. It turned out to be Ryan’s last match of his career.
Here’s to all those great Ryan Giggs’ moments…..