Yesterday i talked about a player, that quite frankly has been a dissapointment so far IMO, Robinho. You can check out yesterday's post to see my points on this. Today i'd like to pay tribute to someone who's the complete opposite ....Ryan Giggs
A quick check on Wikipedia reveals the following facts on Giggsy:
- Ryan Joseph Giggs was born Ryan Joseph Wilson on 29 November 1973 in Canton, Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom (Wilson was his Dad's surname. He took the name Giggs so that everyone knows that he is his mothers son)
- Giggs holds a host of football records, including that of being the most decorated player in British football history. On 11 May 2008, he became the first footballer to collect 10 top division English league title medals. (to have won all those things...damn..i'm so jealous!)
- Giggs was the first player in history to win the PFA Young Player of the Year award consecutively (1992 and 1993) and as of today has played and scored in every single season of the FA Premier League since its inception, also holding the league's record for most all time goal assists with 289 assists in 535 appearances. (thats almost an assist every other game!)
- Giggs is mixed race — his paternal grandfather is from Sierra Leone — and has spoken of the racism he faced as a child. (i wonder how many people actually know this?)
- Giggs had no English grandparents, and was only available to play for Wales and Sierra Leone, the home of his paternal grandfather. (wasn't there some hype about 10 years ago that Giggs should have played for England? How is that possible if neither his parents or grandparents were actually British folk from England!?)
- While playing for Deans FC, Giggs would be watched regularly by local newsagent and Old Trafford steward Harold Wood. Wood regularly told the senior staff at Manchester United about Giggs, but they did not send anyone down to watch him until Wood spoke personally to Alex Ferguson. Wood told the United boss "He's with City at the moment, and if you lose him you'll regret it". So Ferguson sent a scout to a Deans match, who was impressed enough that United offered Giggs a trial over the Christmas period in 1986. (Giggs at Man City...what a waste that would have been...no offence City fans, but you guys haven't done squat in the league)
- The following November, on Giggs' 14th birthday, Ferguson turned up at Giggs's house with United scout Joe Brown and offered him two years on associate schoolboy forms. They also waived YTS forms, and persuaded Giggs with the opportunity to turn professional in three years. Giggs signed there and then. (Wow...on your 14th birthday, a manager tells you that you can play pro when you're 17, and he actually goes on to become pro at the age of 17..read on!)
- Giggs turned professional on 29 November 1990 (his 17th birthday) and made his League debut against Everton at Old Trafford on 2 March 1991 (Giggsy has been playing forever!!!)
- Giggs had a very good disciplinary record during his early career receiving relatively few bookings. In fact, he has never been sent off when playing for Manchester United and only once when playing for Wales. His only red card came in 2001 in an international match against Norway, which Wales lost. (and he's such a nice guy too..hahaha)
Personally, my forever enduring memory of Giggs will be that famous FA Cup goal, when after Patrick Viera lost the ball well into the Man United half, he picked it up, ran up to the half way line, then proceeded to beat the entire Arsenal backline before slotting in the winner. We will probably never ever see another goal like that in the near future.
I also remember that during his early years, a lot of of the media were saying that the last time they saw a lad this talented, it was a certain George Best. I think they were also expecting Giggs to take the same path down life: Football, Booze, Women.
Thank goodness he did not, and thank goodness for Sir Alex Ferguson, who knew what had happened to Best, and did his best to guide Giggs down the 'right' path, without jeapordizing his footballing skills.
There' a rumours that Giggs might retire this year, if he feels he cannot play anymore, or can't play regular games. Either way, he's had an explicably awesome career, littered with medals and cups. He's won practically everything there is to win, except the World Cup. What a way it would be to end a career, if he could lift the BPL throphy one last time, at the end of the season.