Giggs' time is up
There comes a time in the life of every successful sportsman or woman that he or she needs to realise that the time is up.
What has always proven difficult is for these athletes to accept this and stop fighting against time. It is always a sad thing watching these struggles. It is utterly disgraceful of the normally critical and strident press in England that no one has been brave enough to point out to Ryan Giggs of Manchester United that he is in danger of tarnishing the great record he has at Old Trafford.
It does not take a genius to work out that Ryan Giggs is finished at the top level of football. He is over the hill and so far away his brake lights cannot be seen. It is an absolute travesty that first Sir Alex and now David Moyes have not been brave enough to cull his career. Not one of the other eight Champions League seeds drawn last week will have an outfield player who will be 40 years old.
Fortunately I started watching Manchester United before Giggs made his debut and was thrilled to see him as he started to build his career at the great club in Manchester. His place in the record books of the club will never be erased. Neither will his achievements be equalled. However, in the last three seasons it has been painful watching him straining sinews to try and outrun young full-backs.
His presence, and that of Paul Scholes, helped Man United win many honours in the last five seasons but their continued recycling cost the club the services of the excellent Paul Pogba, now at Juventus. It was one of the most startling things in football that the French international was allowed to leave Old Trafford.
Current Sky Sports TV pundit and former Man United skipper and right-back Gary Neville was another who it seemed that Sir Alex was loathe to let go, even though his legs were failing him. However, after a particularly atrocious outing at the Hawthorns, Neville did the honourable thing and quit himself. Those were the actions of a man who thought a lot about his legacy and I have always applauded him for that.
Watching Ryan Giggs labour at Anfield over the weekend and in many big matches over the past three seasons was very painful viewing. There is no reason why he is still carrying on for surely he must know in his heart of hearts that his legs are not what they were. No matter how much his brain is ticking, when the legs are gone they are gone.
David Moyes needs to realise that he has to make a big but needful call in restricting the Welshman to only his coaching roles. He has served the club very well.
The transfer window has finally been closed until January and the biggest winners for me have been Liverpool. They kept Luis Suarez and then made some very useful additions to their squad.
Chelsea's decision to loan out Lukaku, even though Jose Mourinho says they are short of strikers, is a bit puzzling.
The happiest fans it seems are the Arsenal fans, who have seen their club smash their transfer record in the signing of the brilliant German number 10 Mesut Özil from Real Madrid.
No doubt it is a statement of intent from a club who hardly spend any money. In the grand scheme of tactics it will be interesting to see how this plays out. My gut instinct is that Özil could turn out to be to Arsenal what Berbatov and Veron were to Manchester United.
The BPL takes a breather for the World Cup qualifiers and I am sure some teams are grateful for it. When it resumes, the real work starts.
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