Giggs the man for Celtic's Jan to aspire to
Published 23/04/2009 | 00:00
Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink will take inspiration from Manchester United legend Ryan Giggs as the Celtic striker homes in on his fifth title in a row.
The former PSV player picked up two championship medals in Holland before moving to Parkhead in 2006 where he has helped the Hoops to the last two of their three successive Clydesdale Bank Premier League successes.
The Dutchman, 30, who is coming to form at the right time with four goals in his last four games, has a long way to go before he can catch up with 35-year-old Giggs, the most decorated player in English football history who is looking to notch up his 11th Premier League medal this season.
However, it is Giggs’ relentless pursuit of success before he finishes his career that Vennegoor of Hesselink admires as the SPL title race goes down to the last five games with the champions one point ahead of Rangers.
"People remember you as a group and look at the period you played in, and they never forget your successes," he said.
"But I am not thinking about it too much, that’s something you do when you finish playing football.
"What’s important is the here and now. Look at Ryan Giggs (pictured) at Manchester United, people have been speaking this season about his career and all of his achievements, but he is still going. He still has that desire, the hunger and when you see him play, he is unbelievable.
"That’s what you aspire to be as a footballer.
"Even at PSV I was in the habit of winning things and trying to achieve something and when you do that, you take a lot of pride.
"Then, when you are finished, people will look back and say, ’he won this with this team and he was this type of player.’
"That’s nice because if I have a nice CV, a nice record to look back on, I’ll be able to take some pride in that, especially playing for a club like Celtic."
Parkhead manager Gordon Strachan is hoping for a three-pronged benefit from taking his players to on a break to Spain this week while the SPL season stops to accommodate the Homecoming Scottish Cup semi-finals over the weekend.
"There are three different factors behind this decision," he said.
"One, that some players need some rest. "Two, that some need to do a bit more training and finally, that some players need to come back and rehabilitate.
"This puts us in the position where I can do the lot.”