Sir Alex Ferguson has described Ryan Giggs as having a “fantastic temperament” as the former Manchester United coach gave evidence in the assault trial against the ex-footballer.
The former coach was seen arriving at Manchester Crown Court, where he stood in the witness box this afternoon.
Giggs, 48, is on trial accused of using controlling and coercive behaviour against his ex-girlfriend Kate Greville, 38, between August 2017 and November 2020. He is also accused of assaulting her, causing actual bodily harm, and of the common assault of her younger sister, Emma Greville, 26. He denies the charges.
Asked about when he had first scouted Giggs to join the club, Sir Alex said the former winger had possessed a “fantastic temperament” and was “without doubt the best example I had at the club”.
Sir Alex recalled that their first meeting took place in Giggs’s mother’s home, where he attempted to convince Giggs to join Manchester United.
“His main contact was his mother. She was very good. Very accommodating. Ryan was a quiet boy. He just sat there listening to what was being said. His mum did all the talking,” Sir Alex said.
He said they spoke about the “ambitions” for the club. Sir Alex added: “[Manchester United] had been going through a bad period when I arrived at the club in 1986. We had a big job to do. We saw Ryan as one step towards a better situation in regard to young players.”
He added: “Everyone looked at Ryan Giggs as the No 1.”
Asked by Giggs’s barrister, Chris Daw QC, if he had ever seen Giggs “lose his temper or become aggressive”, Sir Alex replied: “No.”
Jurors in the trial have been read a letter written by Giggs’s ex-partner on 29 October 2020 – three days before he allegedly assaulted her.
The letter, titled “The Final Goodbye”, details the former footballer’s alleged infidelities with at least eight women.
Giggs’s defence team read out the letter, which began: “I know pretty much everything you have been doing with other women behind my back since the day I met you.”
Ms Greville described Giggs as a “compulsive liar and serial cheat”, writing: “My gut always told me you couldn’t be trusted.”
She wrote: “I now know you say the same things you say to me to multiple women. I’m nothing special, I was just the one you didn’t let have a happy life.”
The letter claimed the “other women” had “husbands and kids”. Ms Greville also accused Ryan Giggs of “sending dirty messages about threesomes” to an employee at Hotel Football.
The letter also detailed an alleged incident of Giggs “shagging someone else” when he was supposed to be picking Ms Greville up.
Ms Greville accused the former footballer and another woman of having a “full-blown affair in 2014” which “carried on the whole time you were seeing me”. She added: “Let's not forget about [name redacted]” – another woman he was accused of being unfaithful with.
An intimate poem sent by Giggs to Ms Greville, where he referred to his genitalia as a “totem pole”, was heard in court on Thursday.
Several messages between the pair, which are believed to have been shared during the initial period of their relationship, were read out by his defence counsel.
On 30 August 2017, Ms Greville, a public relations executive, sent a message to Mr Giggs saying that he made her “heart flutter because you are a nutter”.
The trial continues.