• Premier League

Giggs: Life different under Van Gaal to Sir Alex

ESPN staff
August 5, 2014
Who's in, who's out for Manchester United?

Ryan Giggs admits life under Louis van Gaal at Manchester United is a radical departure from the Sir Alex Ferguson era.

Giggs won 13 Premier League titles under Ferguson, and, following the sacking of David Moyes in April, stepped into the breach to take charge of United for their final four games on an interim basis last season.

He then ended his 22-year playing career to become assistant manager to Van Gaal, who has introduced a new 3-5-2 formation and training methods which appear to be paying dividends already. United capped off an unbeaten pre-season tour with a 3-1 victory over Liverpool on Monday night to win the International Champions Cup.

"It has been different. The manager works in different ways than I have maybe seen before," Giggs told MUTV.

"Obviously a coach's work is done before training, after training and during training as well so it is different from being a player when you are just focused on training and that is when you do your stuff.

"It has been good. I have been analysing games, presenting to the [players] and it has been a good learning experience. A lot of the courses teach you to take yourself out of your comfort zone because that will improve you. Some of the things I have been doing have been out of my comfort zone but I have really enjoyed it.

"It would have been stranger and more difficult if I didn't have the games that I did at the end of last season. I had a little taste of it last season, which as I keep saying was unbelievable for me and was something that will be great for me in the long run. In the short time that I have been a coach, that has helped me."

The 40 year old also revealed he is finding it difficult to resist the urge to join in with his former team-mates in training.

Giggs is United's record appearance holder, having played 963 games for the club, and admits it was a "strange" feeling not being involved in a playing capacity on tour.

"This tour has been nice, although I have been getting up early to go to the gym. I have been trying to keep in shape but it has been strange," Giggs continued. "For such a long time, towards the end of your holidays, you are itching to get back and do a bit of training but obviously it is a lot different for me this year. There is a lot of adapting to do but I have coped.

"I have been dying for one of the lads to drop out of training to be fair so that I could join in. I joined in the other day, so I have done one session so far. But I am quite happy standing on the sides, observing and watching everybody work."

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