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Dublin: 9 °C Wednesday 16 October, 2019

After 29 years and 34 medals Ryan Giggs has officially left Manchester United

*25 medals if you don’t include Charity Shields.

Image: EMPICS Sport

MANCHESTER UNITED’S RECORD appearance holder and most decorated player Ryan Giggs has left the club, a statement confirmed today.

The 42-year-old spent 29 seasons at Old Trafford since joining the academy at 14 and scored 168 goals in 963 games since making his debut aged 17.

Giggs has acted as assistant manager during the unsuccessful stints of David Moyes and Louis van Gaal, taking over the top job on a temporary basis himself for the final four games of the 2013/14 season – his last as a player.

Since Jose Mourinho’s appointment though, Giggs’ position has looked much less certain. And despite the club saying the former Welsh international was departing to pursue his management career, the legendary winger stressed that he has no offers currently on the table.

“It has not been a decision that I have made lightly. I’ll take away so many special memories as well as a lifetime of experiences that will, I hope, serve me well in the future. However, the time feels right and, although I have no immediate plans to step into management, it is where I want to be.

I’ve been extremely fortunate in having two great managerial mentors; first in Sir Alex, who I’ve spent the majority of my life working with and learning from and who I believe will remain as football’s greatest-ever manager and in more recent times, Louis van Gaal, whose CV speaks for itself. The knowledge I have gleaned from them has been invaluable.”

The other manager Giggs worked under at United, Moyes, is conspicuous by his absence from his parting words. He adds:

“I want to congratulate José Mourinho on his appointment as manager of the world’s biggest club. There are only a handful of proven winners at the very highest level and José is unquestionably one of them. I know the fans will welcome him.”

“It’s time for a new chapter and a new challenge. I’m excited about the future – I’ve had the best apprenticeship into management anyone could ever ask for.”

Read the statement in full here

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Sean Farrell

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