When Louis van Gaal took charge at Manchester United he decided that Ryan Giggs had to be his back-up. The story of how it happened is unmissable, and includes the Welshman taking a punch to the stomach!
These were turbulent times for Manchester United. The club still hadn’t got over the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson and David Moyes lasted just 300 days with the Red Devils. Giggs took over as player-manager until the end of the season, when Louis Van Gaal arrived. Their first meeting was very memorable.
Unknown to Giggs himself, he would become the Dutchman’s assistant, a link between him and the squad. And when he was greeted by his new boss, he can’t of expected the reaction he would get.
“I’ve gone to meet him a hotel, he’s opened the door, looked me up and down and gone ‘you are in good shape!’ Then he punched me in the stomach”, recalled the Welshman.
Giggs froze. What to do? How to respond? “It was hard as well and I didn’t know what to do. You could have given something back but that’s me out of a job”, he added jokingly.
And from there, their relationship grew and went on to last two years and more than 100 games. “He looked after his staff and players and he was a really good person but just very quirky”, said Giggs in an interview for ‘The Greatest Game’.