Giggs has admitted he would have kicked Paul Pogba in training given the behaviour of the Manchester United midfielder this summer.
Pogba stated to the media he wanted to leave this summer, with Real Madrid and Barcelona firmly interested. But United record-appearance holder Giggs declared that sort of attitude would have been clamped down on back in his day, according to The Sun.
When asked how senior members in the dressing room would’ve dealt with a problem like Pogba, Giggs was blunt in his response, using Cristiano Ronaldo as an example.
Giggs said: ‘Kick him in training. But that doesn’t happen any more, you are starting to lose that. ‘Now I’m not saying you kick everyone – but that was how Ronaldo got better. Paul Scholes would kick him if he took too many touches. ‘Suddenly it clicked that you can’t keep dribbling ‘or else I’m going to get kicked’.’ The Wales manager also referred to the effect of senior players who keep the standards high, name-dropping Vincent Kompany as someone who champions Manchester City may miss in that respect.
‘I saw an interview with Kompany at the end of the season, and he’s a bit old school and was asked about the week ahead of their last game at Brighton. ‘He said: ‘Sometimes I have to give a player a kick!’. And I was thinking City might miss that this year!’
Despite Pogba’s lack of respect for United at times, Giggs believes it is vital that Pogba isn’t sold, such is the lack of depth in United’s midfield.
‘I think the fans are split. Some fans say ‘let him go’ and some recognise the quality he has got and if he does go there will be a big void. ‘If you get rid of all the players and you haven’t got quality to replace them, then that is difficult as well.
So it is a tough job for Ole, that balancing act. ‘Ronaldo said he wanted to go and then did an extra year. Whether that is going to happen or not, I don’t know. ‘But if Pogba goes now, there will be a massive void in midfield where I think we are already short.’
Although United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer endured a tough end to last season, Giggs believes his former teammate deserves and requires some time to improve the team.
‘Klopp wasn’t brilliant overnight but I think what you’ve seen from him is improvement every year.
‘It was a gradual improvement and I think, as a United fan, that’s what you want to see. ‘I’m not saying we’re going to win the league this year but if you start seeing improvements and a shift of culture with players you want to go and watch… ‘We’re maybe not going to win every game but you will see players who want to play for the club.
‘We all want Ole to be successful but even if he isn’t, I think he will leave the club in a better state than when he took over, which in itself is a job.’