Giggs wins over the media on debut as Man United manager
Old Trafford interim boss makes an impressive debut... despite being introduced as 'David'
RYAN GIGGS made his debut as manager of Manchester United in front of the world's media on Friday and put in an assured performance ahead of his first match in charge, against Norwich on Saturday.
The 40-year-old, who has been with United since the age of 14, described the events of the last few days as a "whirlwind" but said taking charge of the team would be the "proudest moment of my career".
He also found time to thank David Moyes for making him player-coach, an appointment that has allowed Giggs to take the role of interim boss.
Asked about his approach to management he said he wanted his team to play with the "philosophy" of Manchester United. "Passion, speed, tempo, be brave, imagination. Work hard but most of all enjoy it. If you enjoy it, you can express yourself more."
There were also lighthearted moments. The conference began unexpectedly as Giggs was introduced as "David", prompting guffaws from the media and the new manager. He later joked that now he was in charge he would take the opportunity to extend his playing career by offering himself a new five-year contract. He also confessed that he was still grappling with the question of whether to wear a suit or a tracksuit on the touchline.
Giggs was relaxed, spoke well & said what fans want to hear, but no surprise there. 25 years experience & no real pressure in 4-game tenure
— Paul Kelso (@pkelso) April 25, 2014
It was an impressive performance, says James Ducker of The Times. "In ten minutes, Ryan Giggs sounded more like a Manchester United manager than David Moyes had in ten months," he reports. "There was a steely assurance to the way he spoke but also the odd flash of humour."
He was "comfortable" and "totally at ease" in the media spotlight he adds. And BBC sports editor David Bond agrees. Giggs looked "relaxed and assured - and even managed to crack a few jokes", he says.
"There was no sense of the week from hell the club have had... His performance and promise to deliver football more in keeping with the United tradition will no doubt give fans a lot of reassurance."
However, it was "disappointing" that questions about Moyes were off limits, laments Bond.
Giggs press conference: Finding it very odd, but already looks a better fit than Moyes' first showing, which was very nervous indeed.
— John Brewin (@JohnBrewinESPN) April 25, 2014
Giggs also revealed that he had already been on the phone to Alex Ferguson for advice, and The Guardian suggests that his comments about United's "philosophy" could be interpreted as a "slightly underhand dig at the qualities which have been lacking this season under Moyes".