Revealed: What Giggs told Solskjaer about James
Manchester United legend Ryan Giggs believes that the signing of Daniel James was a "no-brainer" for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
After scoring his first goal for the Reds against Chelsea on the opening weekend of the season, James was handed his first start by Solskjaer in Monday night’s 1-1 draw against Wolverhampton Wanderers at Molineux. He was later shortlisted for the Man of the Match award.
Giggs, who gave the 21-year-old his full international debut as Wales boss, revealed that Ole enquired about the young winger before signing him from Swansea City.
“Ole asked me about him and I just told him that he is a player with plenty of potential,” Ryan told Premier League Productions on Monday night. “He’s really quick, a great lad, someone who you want in the dressing room, a great character. So, it was a no-brainer really, because he is a talent."
During his illustrious career with the Reds, particularly in the early years, Giggsy would often be seen flying down the wing and leaving opposition defenders in his wake.
Some of these traits can be seen in our new signing, who has showcased his lightning pace in pre-season and during two Premier League appearances so far.
Against Leeds United in pre-season, James had an effort cruelly denied by the post after making up an astonishing amount of ground to join Marcus Rashford in a United counterattack.
And against Chelsea, James used his pace again to get into position to score his first goal for the club in front of the Stretford End.
"From a standing start he is quick and he will beat anyone," Giggs added, "It’s just that, like any other young winger, the finishing touches, that final ball, scoring more goals, which he will get better at.
“I watched him a lot for Swansea last year and he ripped nearly every full-back in that division apart.”
Speaking after the game, Ryan was also pleased with how Anthony Martial is performing for United this season.
The Frenchman has bagged two goals in as many games since moving inside from the left wing by Solskjaer.
Martial's former assistant manager, Giggs, believes that Tony's performance on Monday night highlighted how he will have no problem leading the line.
“I've worked with him and he can do it,” Ryan said. “He is strong, and he can hold up the ball, proper centre-forward play. Balls into the channel, chesting it down, holding it up and laying it off and getting in the box, I think there's a lot of promise there.
“He has to do it now for 90 minutes. If I was Ole Gunnar Solskjaer watching that, I'd be very pleased with his overall performance."
Martial's 27th-minute goal sent Solskjaer’s side into the break with a deserved lead, however Ruben Neves’s stunning equaliser for Wolves 10 minutes after the break ensured that the points were shared.
"It was a great goal," said Giggs. "Of course you look at goals, what could you have done better defensively, but you've just got to look at the goal and think, 'well done, great strike'. There's not many players that can do that."