Giggs excited by challenge as he makes managerial bow with Wales

Former Man Utd legend admits to nerves in advance of game against China

Ryan Giggs: “I’m proud to be the Welsh manager and proud to be coaching this group of players.” Photograph: AFP/Getty

Ryan Giggs: “I’m proud to be the Welsh manager and proud to be coaching this group of players.” Photograph: AFP/Getty

 

Ryan Giggs takes charge of his first Wales game on Thursday but believes the spotlight has been taken off him in China by Gareth Bale.

The Real Madrid forward has made a 7,500 mile dash to Nanning to be part of Giggs’s squad to face the hosts in the opening game of the China Cup. Bale is set to be involved, probably as a substitute, with fans from across China expected to travel to see him.

“It’s my first game and I want to get my best team out there,” said Giggs. “Gareth gives everyone a lift and he is used to the spotlight. It was the same when David Beckham came into the United team – he took the limelight away from me.”

Giggs said players such as Bale were “treated like gods” in the Far East but that he would carefully consider how to use the 28-year-old.

“It’s an important part of the season and I won’t be taking any stupid risks,” the manager said. It is understood Wales will avoid a fine in the region of £100,000 if Bale plays. Giggs, asked if his side were under commercial and financial pressure to use him, said: “Yes, of course.”

Giggs has said he will be more nervous than at any time during his playing career when he takes charge of Wales for the first time.

“I never really got nervous as a player but I will be much more nervous tomorrow,” Giggs said. “As a player you want a little bit of nerves but generally speaking I never really got nervous. Coaching and management is completely different.

Most decorated

“As a player you are quite selfish and you are just making sure you are doing your job in the team. As a manager there are so many things to think about that are constantly going through your mind.

“It’s a case of: ‘Have you forgotten anything? What could be improved?’ It’s about preparing the team as best you can with your staff also. Afterwards it is just evaluating, seeing what you could have done better, and seeing what we did well.”

Giggs is British football’s most decorated player and his first steps with Wales are sure to be closely scrutinised. After the game against China his team meet Uruguay or the Czech Republic on Monday.

Southern China is an unusual place to start his reign as a permanent manager but Giggs, who had a spell in interim charge of United, cannot wait to get going.

“I’m proud to be the Welsh manager and proud to be coaching this group of players,” he said. “I’m excited as well. I have been in the job over two months now and this is why I took it. I have been doing various stuff building up to the game and preparing the script as best as I can.

“But getting on the pitch, coaching, watching the lads train and trying to get my message across as quickly as possible has been great.”

Giggs would not reveal who will start but Everton’s Ashley Williams is set to captain the side and Real Madrid’s Gareth Bale is in contention.

– Guardian

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.