x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Premier League: Ryan Giggs extends deal with Man United before milestone

Ryan Giggs is expected to make his 1,000th senior football appearance on Saturday and Manchester United rewarded him with a one-year contract extension.

Manchester United's Ryan Giggs first signed with the club in 1990 and holds the all-time appearances record for the club. Sang Tan / AP Photo
Manchester United's Ryan Giggs first signed with the club in 1990 and holds the all-time appearances record for the club. Sang Tan / AP Photo

Ryan Giggs, who is set to make his 1,000th appearance in senior football on Saturday, has signed a new one-year contract at Manchester United.

The Premier League leaders said the deal keeps the 39-year-old Welsh winger at Old Trafford until June 2014 and will see him complete a 23rd season as a first-team player.

Sir Alex Ferguson, the United manager, said: "What can I say about Ryan that hasn't already been said? He is a marvellous player and an exceptional human being.

"He has fantastic energy for the game and it is wonderful to see. Ryan seems to reach a new milestone every week and to think that he now has 23 unbroken years of league goals behind him is truly amazing in the modern-day game.

"His form this year shows his ability and his enjoyment of the game are as strong as ever and I am absolutely delighted that he has signed a new contract."

Giggs signed professional forms with United in 1990 and made his debut on March 2, 1991. He has made 931 appearances for the club – a Manchester United record – and scored 168 goals.

He has been capped 64 times for Wales and played four times for Team Great Britain in the London Olympics men's football tournament last year.

He has won 12 Premier League titles, four FA Cups, three League Cups, two Uefa Champions Leagues, one Super Cup, an Intercontinental Cup and a Fifa Club World Cup.

Giggs said he was "delighted" to have signed for another season and despite his advancing years said he was "feeling good, enjoying my football more than ever and, most importantly, I feel I am making a contribution to the team".

With nearest-challengers Manchester City not playing until Monday, United can go 15 points clear at the top with victory over Norwich City today.

United's players could hardly be faulted if they are looking ahead to the high-profile second leg of their Champions League tie with Real Madrid on Tuesday, but Ferguson denied his club's focus would wander.

"Norwich is an important one," he said. "Tuesday will look after itself; it's an occasion on Tuesday. Norwich is where our concentration is."

United's top scorer, Robin van Persie, returned to training this week and is available for both games, Ferguson said. The striker injured his hip when he collided with a cameraman during United's win over Queens Park Rangers last weekend.

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