Giggs ready for new Old Trafford test

Ryan Giggs is ready to lead Team GB out at his home ground Old Trafford

Ryan Giggs is ready to lead Team GB out at his home ground Old Trafford

First published in National Sport © by

The dressing room will be the same but everything else will feel different for Ryan Giggs when he leads Team GB into their Olympic opener with Senegal tonight.

Giggs has spent 20 years playing football at Old Trafford. Only once has the 38-year-old not been wearing the red shirt of Manchester United - when he was wearing the same colour shirt as he turned out for Wales in a World Cup qualifier with England in October 2004.

For Team GB he will be sporting blue, creating a whole new environment for Giggs to perform in, and he said: "It is going to be strange. I have done it once before when Wales played England. That day I was in the away dressing room. Fortunately I am in the home one this time."

He added: "But my bread and butter is playing for United in front of United fans at Old Trafford. This is going to be a bit different."

Red Devils team-mate Tom Cleverley has already been told to make the most of his experience by Rio Ferdinand.

And whilst coach Stuart Pearce has offered every member of his squad the opportunity to attend Friday night's eagerly-awaited opening ceremony, whether they are in the mood to enjoy it depends on how they get on against a Senegal side that are likely rely on a very physical approach. Not that Cleverley is worried.

Even with the absence of Gareth Bale, who will not be forced to miss Tottenham's pre-season programme as the FA have declined the opportunity the make an official complaint given the Welshman missed the Olympics due to a back problem, Cleverley believes Team GB are good enough to make a significant impact.

"There is enough quality here," said the Manchester United man. "There is everything in this squad; youth, experience, enthusiasm, speed, technical ability and a good manager.

"There is no reason why we can't do well. It is a strong tournament but if we work hard and turn up on the day, I am sure we will be amongst the medals."

In excess of 70,000 tickets have been sold for GB's first full Olympic appearance since 1960. The game will be preceded by Uruguay's encounter with Group A minnows UAE.


Post a comment

Remember you are personally responsible for what you post on this site and must abide by our site terms. Do not post anything that is false, abusive or malicious. If you wish to complain, please use the ‘report this post’ link.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree