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Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Football: Ferguson praises Giggs as United look to extend winning run


Sir Alex Ferguson has paid tribute to the ‘incredible’ contribution of Ryan Giggs as Manchester United look to keep the pressure on Premier League leaders Manchester City.


After a series of flat performances following their 6-1 mauling by City in October, United have recently recovered some of their former swagger, scoring 11 goals in three consecutive victories.


That run of results included a 5-0 demolition of Fulham at Craven Cottage last week, a match where the 38-year-old Giggs extended his remarkable feat of scoring a goal in every Premier League season.


Ferguson singled out Giggs for praise as United look to maintain their momentum with what should be a relatively straightforward assignment against struggling Wigan on Boxing Day.


“He was unbelievable on Wednesday,” Ferguson said of Giggs’ display against Fulham. “He controlled the midfield. I saw Danny Murphy bellowing to the forwards to come back because he was finding it hard.


“We know he is incredible. It is an established fact. It is an unusual sight we are seeing in the modern-day game, a lad at 38 performing at that level.”


Giggs has meanwhile raised the possibility of extending his United career by yet another season.


“It’s almost that time when I’ll sit down with the manager and see what his plans are and I’ll see how I’m feeling,” Giggs told www.manutd.com.


“At the moment I feel really good and I’m enjoying things more than ever, so we’ll just have to wait and see.”


Mancini calls for improvement


Meanwhile, City manager Roberto Mancini has called on his squad to prove their title credentials by winning on the road at West Bromwich Albion.


City have been invincible at their Eastlands fortress this season, with nine wins from nine matches. But Mancini’s men have taken just one point from their last two away fixtures, a statistic the Italian is determined to improve.


“We still have Chelsea, United, Tottenham and Liverpool to come to [Eastlands], but we need to win away games as well, and we have only one point from our last two,” said Mancini.


“I have a lot of respect for West Bromwich, and for [manager] Roy Hodgson — he is one of the best managers in Europe. It will be very hard because they play good football. They have had some problems but won their last two away games and seem to be in good form.”


In other games today, Chelsea will be confident of collecting all three points as they face a Fulham side still struggling to shake off the after-effects of last week’s 5-0 home mauling by Manchester United.


Liverpool meanwhile will be anxious to take maximum points from bottom club Blackburn at Anfield after disappointment last week in a 0-0 draw with Wigan.

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