Ryan Giggs had ‘an uglier, more sinister side’, court told | Soccer News

Former Manchester United winger Ryan Giggs was ‘idolized’ for his skills on the pitch but behind closed doors had ‘a much uglier and more sinister side to his character’, a court has heard.

Jurors at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court have been told the 48-year-old’s private life involved a ‘litany of abuse, both physical and psychological, of a woman he claimed to love’ .

Giggs is accused of using controlling and coercive behavior against ex-girlfriend Kate Greville between August 2017 and November 2020.

He is also charged with assaulting the 36-year-old woman, causing her actual bodily harm, and assaulting her younger sister, Emma Greville, at her home in Worsley, Greater Manchester on November 1, 2020 .

He pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Opening the case on Monday, prosecutor Peter Wright QC said of the defendant: “He was idolized by his adoring fans and supporters. On the pitch his skills were abundant and a thing of beauty.

“Off the pitch, in the privacy of his personal life at home or behind closed doors, there was, let’s say the facts reveal, a much uglier and more sinister side to his character.

“It was a private life that involved a litany of abuse, both physical and psychological, of a woman he claimed to love.

“A woman who, in fact, was, if the evidence is to be believed, treated in a way that can neither be excused nor ignored, either by an adoring public or by law.

“It’s a story of control and coercion of a woman who thought she was loved and respected. Unfortunately, the reality was very different.”

Ryan Giggs at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court where he is charged with controlling and coercive behavior against ex-girlfriend Kate Greville between August 2017 and November 2020
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Ryan Giggs at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court where he is charged with controlling and coercive behavior against ex-girlfriend Kate Greville between August 2017 and November 2020

The lawyer continued: “Finally, after years of turmoil, when the scales fell from her eyes, she realized she had to step back from her sphere of influence.”

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Mr Wright said the result of this decision to part ways was the incident on November 1, 2020, when Giggs allegedly ‘lost control’ and headbutted Ms Greville.

While out with friends at the Stock Exchange Hotel in Manchester that evening, Ms Greville decided to end their relationship, Mr Wright said.

He said: “She knew the defendant had cheated on her yet again.

“During the evening, the defendant’s behavior towards her led her to make this decision and leave early. Before she returned home, she informed her sister by text message of her plan.

“She intended to leave before she got back from the hotel. The plan didn’t work out.

“As she was leaving the defendant’s home address, he came back and started arguing with her and trying to stop her from leaving.”

The prosecutor said she took his phone as a “bargain” to try to persuade him not to stop her from leaving.

A heated argument ensued and Giggs then tried to grab his phone, which was later found on a fence post in the garden of the property, Mr Wright said.

In the ensuing altercation, they clung to the ground before Ms Greville’s sister intervened, the court heard.

Mr Wright said: “She (Emma Greville) attempted to pull the defendant away from her sister. For her pain, the defendant, we say, deliberately elbowed her in the jaw, which caused her discomfort and shock that he would inflict violence on her sister.

“The argument between the defendant and Kate Greville moved to the kitchen. The couple continued to argue over their mobile phone.

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“At this point, we say, the accused completely lost control of himself and he deliberately headbutted Kate, causing her lips to swell and bruise. Emma then called the police , who went to the scene.

Ryan Giggs has been on leave from his role as Wales manager since November 2020
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Wales furloughed manager Ryan Giggs in November 2020 before appointing Rob Page as his successor in June 2022

Giggs resigned in June as manager of the Wales national team after a period of leave since November 2020.

During his time at Old Trafford, Manchester United won 13 Premier League titles, two Champions League trophies, four FA Cups and three League Cups.

He has won 64 caps for Wales and is co-owner of League To side Salford City.

Mr Wright told the jury he would give a ‘snapshot’ of the nature of the relationship between the defendant and Ms Greville, a woman more than 10 years younger than him.

Ms Greville would block Giggs on social media and then email her instead, he said.

Giggs allegedly threatened to send images of her, “of a personal nature”, to her friends unless she did as he said.

He physically threw her and her belongings out of an address where they were staying, after Ms Greville called out to him about another woman and threw an object at him during a seizure in a bedroom hotel in London, the jury heard.

Giggs harassed Ms Greville with messages, including messages to her friends, and presented herself as “undesirable” at her home or at the gym she used.

Mr Wright added: ‘It was not an expression of love, it was obsessive behavior on her part.’

Mr Wright gave the jury a taste of some of the ‘thousands’ of messages the couple exchanged.

He quoted one from Giggs, who said, “Please unblock me. All this blocking malarkey is poop. Promise, no more nude pics.”

“You might want to ask yourself what he was threatening to do,” Mr Wright added.

A few minutes later, Giggs sent an email with an attachment, with the header “Blackmail.”

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