Ten-time winner Giggs places team success above personal milestones

May 12th, 2008 - 12:15 pm ICT by admin  

London, May 12 (DPA) Manchester United winger Ryan Giggs insisted personal records meant nothing to him after his side wrapped up the Premier League title with a 2-0 win away to Wigan Athletic. The Welshman came off the bench Sunday to equal Sir Bobby Charlton’s record of 758 appearances for the club, and then added the second goal to collect a record 10th champions medal.

But he insisted such things were of secondary concern and, within seconds of the final whistle, was already looking ahead to the Champions League final against Chelsea in Moscow a week come Wednesday.

“It was a great goal to settle us down,” he said. “That made it all a bit more comfortable. I’m not bothered by the record. This is what it’s all about - championships. I hope we can win again in 10 days time.”

Giggs admitted that United were far from their best, but a first-half penalty from Cristiano Ronaldo set them on their way.

“We knew it would be a tough game today,” Giggs said. “We didn’t play well in the first half, but we held on.”

Christiano Ronaldo, the players’ player of the year, had missed his last penalty, away to Barcelona in the Champions League semi-final, but he held his nerve after Emerson Boyce had fouled Wayne Rooney.

“The pressure was high,” said Ronaldo. “We believed in ourselves and deserved to win it.

“I knew if I scored today we were going to win. I’m very happy. My team gave me good passes and built up my confidence. The team played very well. We had the best players and were the best team in the Premier League.”

As it turned out, a draw would have been enough, as Chelsea, who had begun the day level on points with United, drew 1-1 at home to Bolton.

Andriy Shevchenko put them ahead after 62 minutes, but Matt Taylor levelled in injury time.

“It was tough one,” admitted Sir Alex Ferguson, as he reflected on his 10th title. “To go to the last game, and away from home makes it tougher.

“In fairness for most of the game we played well. We had some nervous moments but just after half-time we started to get a grip.

“Their keeper made a couple of saves and we were just thinking: where’s the second?

“Then our oldest player, 10 medals, gets the goal. Fantastic.” Ferguson also insisted that his side now has the psychological advantage going into the Champions League final.

“We’re bouncing into the final,” he said, in what was surely a jibe at Chelsea. “If we’d lost today, we’d have been dead going into the final.”

He also scoffed at suggestions he might retire if United are successful in Moscow. “How could I live without this?” he asked.

“I’m very proud. This is a great club. It’s easier for me than anyone else.”

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