Manchester United’s two veterans Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes have both been instrumental for the club when they’ve played but how do they fare when compared to last season?
Ryan Giggs Stats Comparison
Defensively, the Ryan Giggs of 2010/11 is not too different to the Ryan Giggs of 2011/12. Ryan Giggs’ stats for the two seasons are almost identical. The only real difference is the rate at which he is intercepting the ball. The surge in the rate at which Ryan Giggs has been intercepting the ball is easily explained by the position he has been playing this season, compared to the last season. Ryan Giggs has more often than not found himself playing at central midfield this season.
On average, Ryan Giggs has been making more passes this season than last season. Only on 1 occasion has Ryan Giggs found himself on the left wing this season and so with the new role in the centre that he’s been entrusted with, the rate at which he is passing has increased. His familiarity of this role has also increased and with his understanding, he has become better equipt to control the game. The number of minutes it takes for Ryan Giggs to create a chance is in itself absolutely fantastic. Creating a chance every 27 minutes is comparable with the best in the Premier League, and doing so whilst often playing as a 2nd central midfield makes it all the more impressive.
All in all, it is probably fair to say that Ryan Giggs has improved as a player. His new role suits the intelligence and experience that he has in his game. Ryan Giggs is showing no signs of stopping, having just recently signed a new contract to keep him playing for Manchester United until he is 39. His total of 8 assists have him joint fourth highest with Juan Mata in the league and with the least playing time!
Paul Scholes Stats Comparison
After half a season out of football, Paul Scholes returned to the game to again play at the highest level and the early indications is that his ability has returned with him. Passing is the aspect of the game which Paul Scholes is best known for and although he has not been back for too long, it appears that this aspect of his game has further improved. On average, Paul Scholes has attempted 14 more passes each game and he has completed 12 more this season.
Most other aspects of Paul Scholes’ game seem similar however, most surprising of all, it seems that retirement has improved his tackling. In the past, he has not been famed for excelling in the tackling department however Scholes has been attempted tackles at a greater rate and is winning more of them. The statistics in the attacking department also indicates an improvement, however having only been back for such a limited amount of time, taking into account the low number of shots that he has taken, these figures can be easily skewed.
Both of the ‘goldie oldies’ have showed signs of improvement, but more importantly it is the fact that at 37 and 38 respectively, Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs have shown no signs of decline. It would not be too far-fetched to believe that both of them can go on to play yet another season at a very high performance level. Like a good bottle of wine, they’ve both got better with age.