SIR Alex Ferguson called Ryan Giggs a “quiet boy” with a “fantastic temperament” as he took the stand to defend the former footballer this afternoon.
Manchester United legend Fergie, who has known Giggs since his early teens, said the player was an “example” to others.
The footballer is accused of headbutting his ex girlfriend Kate Greville as they broke up, as well as controlling her during their tumultuous relationship.
Sir Alex said today that Giggs entered the first team at the age of just 17 – and began attracting attention after the media “started comparing him with George Best”.
“We did have to protect him,” he said.
“When I lost my temper about a performance, I would use Ryan as an example.
“He would get the sharp end of my tongue.
“I knew he could take it.”
He said Giggs has a “fantastic temperament”.
“He was without doubt the best example I had at any club. Everyone looked at Ryan as the number one,” Sir Alex added.
Sir Alex, 80, said he first got to know Giggs when the player was just 13.
“We tried hard to convince him to come to Manchester United,” he said.
“Ryan was a quiet boy. He sat there and listened to what we were saying.”
Karen Baird, the chairman of Salford City football club, then told the court she thought of Giggs as being “very much a gentleman”.
“I’ve never even seen him raise his voice,” she said.
Asked how he reacted at social events after a drink, she replied: “In the last Christmas party before lockdown, he was dancing on a chair with Gary Neville.”
Neville and Giggs are among the co-owners of Salford City.
The witnesses appeared at court today after more poems between Giggs and Ms Greville were revealed.
One ode saw Giggs use the letters of his then-girlfriend’s surname to list her attributes.
He wrote “gorgeous” next to the letter G, “radiant” next to the R, “extraordinary” alongside the E and “vivacious” beside the V.
Both Ls were followed with “legs”.
Yesterday, the court also heard an explicit poem Giggs had written, in which he told Ms Greville he was “as hard as a totem pole”.
She returned the favour, writing in her own poem: “Everyday you do me proud, because you’re well endowed.”
He would get the sharp end of my tongue. I knew he could take it… he has a fantastic temperament
Sir Alex Ferguson
Jurors sitting at Manchester Crown Court also spent an hour and a half hearing of other messages between the couple this morning.
Giggs referred to Ms Greville as “the jam in my doughnut”, “the salt in my tequila” and “the truffle in my pasta”.
But the relationship, which began when both were married to other people, soured before finally ending in November last year.
On one occasion, Ms Greville said she was left feeling like a “w***e” when Giggs left her at a restaurant table to arrange medical care for his injured daughter.
And on November 1, she alleges she was assaulted at her multimillion-pound mansion as she and her sister packed her bags after she discovered Giggs was sleeping with 12 women.
The former Wales manager, 48, is on trial accused of assaulting Ms Greville, 38, as well as controlling and coercive behaviour towards her over a three-year period.
He denies all charges and the trial continues.