Alright readers? As this is my debut article, Im hoping you will not all rush at once to criticise, but enjoy and feel free to voice your opinions. As a Manchester United fan, my articles will be more or less based on them. As you would, or should, know by now is news that Ryan Giggs has signed on at the club for an extra year. The deal will see him throught till the summer of 2009 and extend his already 19 year stay at the club. The question is does Manchester United really still need Ryan Giggs?
Ok, Ive gotta come clean before i start the Pro's of this article..Giggsy is my all-time favourite player. Please excuse me if you think that this article is SLIGHTLY biased, but here it goes. So, 16 years after his first team debut, the Welsh Wizard is still going strong. After Fergie's BIG splash in the transfer market this summer, many thought that this would be Giggsy and Scholesy's last season in the Premier League. The signings of Nani and Anderson were clear indications of that, and they were expected to be slowly eased into the first team this season, with the aim of preparing them to fill in the gigantic boots that Giggs and Scholes would leave. The extension of Giggs' contract throws that theory out of the window, although you would expect him to start less games than he has in the previous seasons. In reference to Sheikh Zakaria's article(http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2920-Manchester_United-European_Football-The_Golden_Era_of_Manchester_United_Can_the_Next_Gen_Players_Uphold_It_-171007) he is right in saying that we have to prepare the next generation to continue the success the club has acheived. So why let Giggs stay on? I see Giggs as playing a very important role for the club in the coming years. Nani and Anderson are still young kids, with HUGE potential, that need to be taught and mentored about what its like to play for a massive club like Man United. No disrespect to Sporting or Porto, but they aren't clubs of Man United's stature, and there is not much pressure playing for them. Players like Giggs are still needed to guide the players of tomorrow. Another reason for Giggs extending his stay would be the fact that players are meant to be given contracts based on their performances. Giggs' inspirational season last year certainly deserves it. Yes, he may not have the pace he once had and, Yes his right foot might still be as good as dead, but who cares when you have the intelligence and ability on the pitch that he does. His lack of pace means that he rarely hogs the touchline like the good old days, but how effective has he been playing just off the striker and in middle of the park? Loyalty is another commodity that is rarely seen in football these days. After 16 years of service to this club, i think it is fair to say that Giggs can stay as long as he wants. If Giggs' Welsh compatriot at Bolton, Gary Speed, can still produce the goods in the English Premier League, so can Giggsy! At 33 Giggs knows his own body better than anyone else, but because of the way he has taken care of it there might still be another 2 useful years left in him. How often have you seen pictures of Giggs stumbling out of a nightclub or stories of him drinking heavily? Never, which shows how his discipline will further extend his career.
Yes, yes i can hear quite a few of you questioning the wisdom of letting a 33 year old man stay even longer at the club. Ok, I admit his performances this season haven't matched up to last years and there have been people who have been wanting him to be dropped for the more energetic and quicker Nani. Does he deserve to start every game because of his reputation? Of course not! If I had to choose the strongest United 11 based on performances this season, Giggs would not be in it. A mate of mine, who is the only United fan i have known to despise Giggs with a passion said that out of the 16 seasons he has played in, only 2 were top quality. I highly disagree with this, as i would expect the majority of the United fans to. But if you look at the season reviews in greaet detail, i can sort of see where he is coming from. Lack of consistency and goals would be the criticism that I have of Giggs. There have been far too many games for my liking where he has gone 'missing' in and what about all those easy chances he has a knack of missing? Most of your minds will immediately be cast backed to the FA Cup game against Arsenal, where after rounding David Seaman, he somehow managed to boot the ball over the bar with no one in sight. Then there was last seasons miss against West Ham at Upton Park, with the scores still 0-0. The FA Cup final miss, last season, was also another case of missing when it was easier to score. Finally, Manchester United's style has always been all about fast counter-attacking play, but would this be possible with Giggs still in the team? The days of Schmeichel plucking a corner out of the air and launching a massive throw to Giggsy have long gone, although it could still work by having Ronaldo and Nani on either wing.
You could point out all the bad things to me about Giggs, but he will always be mine, and most peoples hero. The number 11 will always be associated with Giggs for many years to come. Those who have seen him play will not have regretted it for one minute, I mean this is a guy who has won the league 9 times!!! Lets just hope that the next 18 months Giggs has remaining on his contract are the ones that will see him win more honours.
"He's won it 9 times, He's won it 9 tiiiiiiimmmeesss, that boy Giggsy has won it 9 times
He'll win it 10 times, He'll win it 10 tiiiiiimmmmesss, that boy Giggsy will win it 10 times"
Till next time....Out!!