Still going strong

Published : Dec 28, 2013 00:00 IST

Ryan Giggs is keen to keep pushing forward despite turning 40 last month. The Manchester United stalwart conceded it will be a specific incident in the future that will tell him when he must call it a day.

Most footballers have hung up their boots by the time they celebrate their 40th birthday, but not Ryan Giggs. Not only is he still playing but is doing so at one of the biggest clubs in the world and with no intention of stopping anytime soon.

The Welshman is keen to keep pushing forward despite turning 40 last month. The Manchester United stalwart conceded it will be a specific incident in the future that will tell him when he must call it a day.

But after more than 950 appearances for the Old Trafford club, Giggs is still trying to prolong his playing career for as long as possible. “There will be some incident, something will not be quite right, I’ll feel different,” he told BBC's ‘Football Focus’. “I’m obviously wary of that because I’m still wanting to do well and wanting to focus on winning games.”

Giggs has backed manager David Moyes to guide United to retain their English Premier League title, despite an indifferent start to the new manager’s reign.

He said: “Of course we can win it again. We haven’t got off to a great start but we’ve picked up more consistency lately. From the experience of the years, you know you just hang in there and hopefully something will happen. When you’re starting out you don’t look forward 10 to 15 years, it’s a million miles away.

“He (Sir Alex Ferguson) was a massive part of my career: you knew with the manager at the helm you always had a chance of success. From first meeting him at 12, 13 up until now; he still has an influence.”

Giggs underlined how much he still has to offer with his performance in the recent 5-0 Champions League victory over Bayer Leverkusen and Paul Scholes believes his former team-mate could continue playing at the top level for possibly another three years.

“He always says he will play as long as he is contributing, and there is no evidence of his contribution waning at the moment,” Scholes told BBC 5 Live’s ‘Sportsweek’ programme.

“I am sure he can play until he is 41, 42, maybe even 43. As long as he wants to, he will be able to play. The way he plays, he sits in midfield, he controls a game, he can make a pass, he can defend, he can still run up and down all day if he wants to. I really think he is capable of doing that.”

Scholes paid tribute to Giggs’ fitness regime as being crucial to his longevity. “He is an incredible player, really,” Scholes added. “To still be doing what he's doing at his age is no surprise when you know the man, how well he has looked after himself over the years. To play football these days you have to look after yourself incredibly well.

“It is such a professional game these days, the players are so fit, but he is a natural athlete. He will do all his yoga, he will eat the right foods, he prepares himself meticulously for what is needed as a Premier League footballer. Everything he does is geared towards his fitness and keeping healthy. He’s managed to do that. I watched him the other day and he was by far and away the best player on the pitch. To be doing that at his age is a special achievement.”

© PA Sport, 2013, All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, re-written, re-distributed or commercially exploited. Sportstar is not responsible for any inaccuracy in the material.

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