So much of United’s history reads like an elaborate script for a movie, ranging from the incredible to the unbelievable. Ryan Giggs’ career fits perfectly in to this story, spending 18 years (so far) at the club, winning the Treble, scoring that goal against Arsenal in the FA Cup semi-final replay, and beating Sir Bobby Charlton’s record for appearances on the night he won the second European Cup of his career, scoring the final penalty for United.
Giggs reckons that Wayne Rooney is the best candidate for beating his record and hopes this is the case. Whether he can manage close to the 800 appearances with his injury prone feet is another matter though.
“I think there are players here who could do it,” said Giggs. “Wayne Rooney has been here since he was 20 and has the capacity to stay in the team a long, long time. Hopefully he and other players will do what I’ve done and spend their careers at United. It is a special club and it is not easy to stay in the team throughout your career – but it is possible.”
Giggs has also reflected on his own future, with the hopes of staying at the club for longer than just the year he has remaining on his contract.
“I’ve got a year left and as long as I feel healthy, I’m enjoying football and playing a lot of games, I will carry on,” he added. “I’m enjoying it more than ever. When you realise the end is coming, you try to enjoy every game because you appreciate how hard it is to make a career in this sport. It does take longer to recover now than when I was 19 or 20 and could play every day. But if you look after yourself, you can stay as fit as ever. I’m not as fast as I was, but you make up for that with experience and use your head more. With the nutritionists, diets and science these days, barring injury, there is no excuse for not playing into your 30s.”