Giggs on greatness

Inside United magazine asked Ryan Giggs for his thoughts on the other nine players who made up United’s Top Ten Greatest Ever Players according to the latest poll, but first asked for his opinion on who he would have voted for, which he gave us in descending order.

He said: “Peter Schmeichel, Roy Keane and Paul Scholes. Obviously there have been some unbelievable players here down the years – Best, Law, Charlton; Duncan Edwards… so many. But I’ve gone for the ones I’ve played with, purely because I’ve seen what they did first hand and what they bring to the team.”

And his thoughts on the Top Ten?

No.2 Eric Cantona
“Eric was a matchwinner. With him in the team, you always felt he was going to create a chance or score a goal, and he scored so many important ones for us. He was a great guy off the pitch too, and really was just one of the lads.”

No.3 George Best
“Obviously I only saw videos of him playing, but some of the things he did on the pitch and the goals he scored were incredible. His movement was unbelievable, and he could tear defences apart both here and in Europe. He played during a time when there were some pretty tasty tackles flying in which you wouldn’t get away with these days, but he had such great balance and seemed to skip past anyone in his path.”

No.4 Sir Bobby Charlton
“A legend at this club and someone who has had a massive influence on me. He was a hugely talented footballer who could score goals with either foot. He used to train with us before Champions League away games a few years back, and you could see he still had it even then, that dip of the shoulder and the ability to shoot with either foot.”

No.5 Cristiano Ronaldo
“Like Best, Cristiano was a very brave player. He went from being a fantastic winger and dribbler to being an unbelievable goalscorer as well. Right foot, left foot, free-kicks, penalties, headers… he can score all types of goals. He really is the all-round package.”

No.6 Paul Scholes
“I’d go for Scholesy as the club’s greatest ever player. I’ve seen him do things that no other player can do. The way he can control the tempo of games, and his range of passing, are both incredible. We’ve seen over the years that players just haven’t been able to get near him. And you can’t forget his goals either.”

No.7 David Beckham
“The best crosser and passer of a ball over long distances I’ve ever seen. Becks not only had great technique, his work-rate was first class: he never stopped. He wasn’t the quickest, but he had great movement and always popped up in those little pockets where he was hard for defenders to pick up.”

No.8 Roy Keane
“Keaney was the driving influence in the squad – he was someone you’d always want in your team. You always felt that when he was on the pitch you had a chance. A great captain.”

No.9 Peter Schmeichel
“Like Eric, Peter was simply a matchwinner. He was such an imposing figure in goal – he saved us so many times in games and won us a lot of points.”

No.10 Wayne Rooney
“A technically brilliant footballer and someone who gives everything to the cause. Wayne is physically and mentally strong, can score goals and is capable of producing the moments of magic which win you games.”