Britain's most decorated player leaves childhood club Manchester United: Read Ryan Giggs' emotional open letter
Giggs joined United as a 14-year-old, and went on to become a club legend.
New Delhi: Britain's most decorated football player Ryan Giggs has left his childhood club Manchester United after 29 years of association.
The 42-year old Welshman's departure was possibly a direct result of turbulent times England's most successful club faced during the times of David Moyes and Louis van Gaal, then the arrival of Jose Mourinho as the new manager.
Below is an open letter that he has written to fans:
After twenty-nine seasons at Manchester United as a player and assistant manager, I know winning is in the DNA of this club - giving youth a chance, and playing attacking and exciting football. It's healthy to have high expectations, it's right to expect to win. Manchester United expects, deserves, nothing less.
This is why it is a huge decision for me to step away from the club that has been my life since the age of 14. It has not been a decision that I have made lightly. I'll take away so many special memories as well as a lifetime of experiences that will, I hope, serve me well in the future.
However, the time feels right and although I have no immediate plans to step into management, it is where I want to be.
I've been extremely fortunate in having two great managerial mentors, firstly in Sir Alex who I've spent the majority of my life working with and learning from, and who I believe will remain as football's greatest ever manager, and in more recent times, Louis van Gaal, whose CV speaks for itself. The knowledge I have gleaned from them has been invaluable.
I want to reiterate my thanks to the backroom staff and support teams at Manchester United I've worked with over the years. The results on the pitch are a reflection of the hard work off it, I would not have achieved the success I have without the dedication, sacrifice and commitment of these people in creating the best environment for the team to succeed.
I want to congratulate Jose Mourinho on his appointment as manager of the world's biggest club. There are only a handful of proven winners at the very highest level and Jose is unquestionably one of them. I know the fans will welcome him.
My final thank you is to the fans. I cannot begin to tell you how much I will miss walking out at Old Trafford in front of you. It's extremely difficult to say goodbye after 29 years. I have loved every minute both as a player and assistant manager. The support you have always shown me has been phenomenal, thank you.
It's time for a new chapter and a new challenge. I'm excited about the future - I've had the best apprenticeship into management anyone could ever ask for.