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May 7, 2014

Van Persie likens Giggs to Ferguson

Robin van Persie has compared Ryan Giggs to Sir Alex Ferguson by saying that Manchester United's interim manager has emulated the retired great by delivering similarly inspirational team talks.

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The Dutch striker missed Giggs' first game in caretaker charge with a knee injury but has been used as a substitute in the last two, scoring in Tuesday's 3-1 win over Hull.

And he said Giggs reminded him of Ferguson, who left his post last summer after 26 years at the helm, in the way he addressed his players.

"I witnessed two team meetings as I came in a bit late," Van Persie told MUTV. "The one from the last game against Sunderland, and [the Hull] game, were incredible. They were Sir Alex-esque."

Giggs brought himself off the bench against Sunderland to set up Van Persie's goal and, but for a save from Eldin Jakupovic, would have scored with an injury-time free kick.

"He's been brilliant and I think he came on without even warming up," Van Persie added. "Am I correct? He came on without a warm-up, put in some fantastic passes and almost scored. He's a legend and I think he shows that every day."

While United are waiting to discover if it will prove Giggs' final appearance at Old Trafford, they know it was Nemanja Vidic's farewell with the captain having agreed to join Inter Milan.

And Van Persie paid tribute to the defender, saying: "Nemanja has been great. He's been playing here for eight-and-a-half years and the thing I always say about him is that he puts his head where people are scared to put their feet.

"That is Nemanja. He wants to die for the cause, in a good way. He is very brave, a great player and he's won everything at Manchester United. It was a special day for him too."

Midfielder Michael Carrick added: "He's a leader and one of the best defenders the club has had. It's sad that he's leaving because he'll be missed as he's a top player and an important part of the squad. Sometimes you've got to move on and we respect that."

Vidic addressed the Old Trafford crowd during the United players' lap of honour and Carrick said: "I'm sure he must have been touched by the reception he got. He's a man of few words so I was a bit surprised to see him get on the microphone at the end.

"You could see he was touched and there was definitely some emotion there. He's got one game left but that was his last one at this special place. He'll be missed."

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