Ryan Giggs was my hero growing up. Exciting to watch, he was the new young idol who all the kids wanted to be in the playground. I had the Ryan Giggs Secret & Skills VHS, the Giggsy Annual, posters blue tacked to my wall and even learnt the Giggs and Ince celebration to add that extra realism to the goals I scored as Giggsy.
Whenever I think about my childhood United memories there is always one goal that I think of first. I can remember the commentator declaring ‘The boys a genius’ as he fired the ball past the keeper followed by talk of him being the new George Best as replays show Giggsy leaving several defenders lying on the floor after failed attempts to stop him.
He celebrated with a little twirl of a raised finger as if to gesture it really was as easy as he made it look. First off there was the balance he displayed as he stayed on his feet to evade the first lunging tackle, next a quick side step to leave another lying on the floor. All that was left was the simple job of out running a cluster of defenders trying to keep up as he changed direction, heading to his magical left foot and smashing the ball past the keeper into the far corner.
Not only did Giggsy make it look easy, but he made it look cool.
After first seeing this moment on Match of the Day, I went to sleep replaying the goal over and over in my head, studying it ready to tell all of my friends the next day and then look to recreate something similar during a kick about the next morning using fences as goals and coats as fallen defenders.
The next day, an old neighbour (A United fan who used to tell me stories of the Babes and keep me updated on the latest news) who had taped Match of the Day, heard me talk about this magical moment and lent me the tape. I rushed home, fast forwarded to the goal and watched again, and again and again.
19 years later and I am watching it again, and again and again.
The 1993/94 Premier League, which saw United finish as Champions also saw Ryan Giggs most prolific goal scoring season in his United career. He scored 17 goals in all competitions, 13 in the League including this sensational goal away in a 3-2 win at Queens Park Rangers on February 5th 1994.