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Giggs' golden goals

ESPN staff
March 1, 2013
© Getty Images

It is always difficult for footballers to rank their greatest goals, with each one being as significant as the other. Which is why we have done the work for Ryan Giggs, who is poised to make his 1000th appearance this weekend.

As the most decorated player in the history of English football, Giggs continues to put on dazzling displays for Manchester United. And most seem to forget he will turn 40 this November. However, age is not holding the Welsh wizard back. His goal against Everton early in February kept up his record of scoring in each of the 21 Premier League seasons.

Sure Giggs isn't a prolific goalscorer, but some of his goals have been spectacular and stunning, and here are some of the best.

Arsenal 1-2 Manchester United, Villa Park, April 14, 1999

Putting the hairy chest moment to one side, this titanic tussle typified the magic of the FA Cup.

The two DBs of David Beckham and Dennis Bergkamp struck great goals in a game that was poised at 1-1 and seemingly heading for a penalty shootout, but after Roy Keane had been sent off and Bergkamp's penalty was saved by Peter Schmeichel, the tie was going to be settled by some brilliance from Giggs.

Collecting the ball from a loose pass from Patrick Vieira, Giggs inside his own half waltzed past the Frenchman, dodged the challenge of Lee Dixon, glided past Martin Keown, evaded the tackle of Tony Adams and drilled his shot into the roof of the net beyond David Seaman - prompting the famous United ditty 'Vieira, woah-oh Vieira. He gave Giggsy the ball and Arsenal won f**k all'.

Tottenham 1-3 Manchester United, September 12, 2009

Free kicks at United over the previous few years were always the responsibility of Beckham and Cristiano Ronaldo, but with the pair absent when both departed for Real Madrid in 2003 and 2009, Giggs was back on free kick duties as he was in the past. This one against Tottenham at White Hart Lane proved he still has a deadly touch from a set piece, as he curled the ball over the wall, across the face of the keeper and into the top corner.

Juventus 0-3 Manchester United, February 25, 2003

Left foot, right foot, not much of a difference. Receiving the ball in a similar position to the Arsenal one, Giggs did what he did best, frightening the defence by running at them. Unlike the Arsenal goal, Giggs decided to dart to the right rather than to the left, but the result was still the same, as he stroked the ball into the net.

Tottenham 1-1 Manchester United, September 19, 1992

Tottenham were the victims once again. At the tender age of 18 a youthful-looking Giggs burst onto the scene with a truly remarkable goal, one that only required four touches for it to materialise. The first to show Dean Austin a clean set of heels, the second to slip the ball (embarrassingly) under Jason Cundy's legs, and the third to round Ian Walker before finishing off the move. All in the blinking of an eye.

QPR 2-3 Manchester United, February 5, 1994

Giggs may have recently struck against QPR last weekend, but the one he scored against the Hoops under a decade ago was something special. Seizing on the loose ball (players still not learning), the Welshman bamboozled the Rangers backline, and next thing you know he was off celebrating.

West Ham 0-1 Manchester United, February 8, 2009

West Ham underestimated Giggs, 35 at the time, and left him completely unmarked on the left wing. Moments later, they would come to regret it as Paul Scholes, with one of his many accurate passes, found his fellow veteran, allowing Giggs to cut inside, jink past a couple of players and neatly finish, with the goal being the only one of the game and helping United to land another Premier League title.

Man City 2-3 Manchester United, April 6, 1996

With United fighting for the championship and bitter Manchester rivals City battling to stay in the top-flight, Giggs - 13 minutes from the end - ensured the Red Devils would extend their lead to six points over Newcastle United. City would go on to be relegated and United would win the title. A good day for fans of the team in red.

Manchester United 3-2 Juventus, October 1, 1997

A side possessing world stars of Zinedine Zidane and Alessandro Del Piero, it was United's maestro Giggs with the decisive goal, beating Angelo Peruzzi from an seemingly impossible angle to secure the three points at Old Trafford.

Fulham 1-2 Manchester United, February 24, 2007

United found themselves a goal behind, but Giggs popped up with an exquisite equaliser from a volley on the half-hour mark to light up Craven Cottage. Ronaldo grabbed the headlines by scoring the winning goal in the 88th minute, a goal which went a long way helping United win the Premier League for the first time in four seasons and is possibly why this is one of the goals that has not got the credit it fully deserves.

Manchester United 7-0 Barnsley, October 25, 1997

Sir Alex Ferguson's men were well on their way to hammering a hapless Barnsley, so Giggs decided to get in on the act with two goals, the first cutting in from the left in trademark fashion, showing a good turn of speed and releasing his shot that took off and landed right in the top corner.

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