Giggs hoping Ferguson’s habits will rub off on his Wales side

Ryan Giggs hopes Wales develop a European Championship habit of scoring in the ‘Fergie time’ that he became accustomed to as a Manchester United player.

Ben Woodburn’s injury-time winner against Trinidad & Tobago on Wednesday was the second time in three games that Wales have scored in the 89th minute or beyond.

United specialised in late goals during Sir Alex Ferguson’s 26 years at Old Trafford, and Giggs hopes his former manager’s magic rubs off as Wales prepare to start their Euro 2020 qualifying campaign against Slovakia on Sunday.

Soccer – FA Cup – Third Round – West Ham United v Manchester United – Upton Park
Sir Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United sides were the masters of scoring late goals (Nick Potts/PA)

Asked if scoring in what has generally become known as ‘Fergie Time’ is a good sign, manager Giggs said: “Yes, I’ve said that, as long as you’ve got a clean sheet.

“OK, it didn’t come of anything against Denmark but we scored late on – and now we have done it again.

“That’s a nice habit to have and that’s what I said to the players.

“Once you have that trait it doesn’t leave you.


“You know it, and the opposition know it as well, that you are a team that can score late.”

Wales are confident Aaron Ramsey will be fit for the Slovakia game in Cardiff after a thigh injury.

Arsenal midfielder Ramsey sat out the Trinidad & Tobago win as Giggs rested his first-team almost en bloc.

“We’ve got a few bumps and bruises but then we have Friday and Saturday to prepare for the game,” Giggs said.

Albania v Wales – International Friendly – Elbasan Arena
Wales are confident Aaron Ramsey will be fit to play against Slovakia in their opening European Championship qualifier (Adam Davy/PA)

“Aaron’s injury is coming along nicely, we just have to monitor that. Everyone else is good.

“Ashley (Williams) and Paul Dummett needed a game, especially Ashley because he’s been in and out (at Stoke).

“It gives me options going into the game on Sunday.

“I’ll talk with the staff and see how the lads train in the next few days and then make the decision.”

Wales beat Slovakia 2-1 at Euro 2016 at the start of their incredible run to the semi-finals in France.

Wales v Slovakia – UEFA Euro 2016 – Group B – Stade de Bordeaux
Hal Robson-Kanu celebrates after scoring Wales’ winner against Slovakia in their Euro 2016 clash at Bordeaux (Mike Egerton/PA)

Slovakia are ranked 10 places below Wales in 29th and start the Euro 2020 qualifiers after a disappointing Nations League campaign which saw them relegated from League B.

“They have had two or three retiring but they are a good team and probably the nearest rivals to us,” Giggs said.

“It’s big game, but this is one of the big reasons why I was so excited to take the job.

“I wanted to be a part of a qualifying campaign and now we get that chance.”