Former Manchester United star Ryan Giggs has an “uglier and sinister side,” the court said

Former Manchester United footballer Ryan Giggs was “idolized” for his skills on the pitch, but behind closed doors he had “a much uglier and sinister side to his character,” according to a court.

The Urors at the Crown Court on Minshull Street in Manchester were told the 48-year-old’s private life included a “litany of physical and psychological abuse by a woman he allegedly loved”.

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

He is also accused of assaulting and actually assaulting the 36-year-old and assaulting her younger sister Emma Greville together at his home in Worsley, Greater Manchester on November 1, 2020.

He has pleaded not guilty to all charges.


Former Manchester United footballer Ryan Giggs arrives at Crown Court on Minshull Street in Manchester, where he is accused of controlled and coercive behavior against ex-girlfriend Kate Greville between August 2017 and November 2020. Danny Lawson/PA Wire

Prosecutor Peter Wright QC opened the case on Monday, saying of the defendant: “He was idolized by his adoring fans and supporters. On the pitch, his skills were plentiful and a thing of beauty.

“Off the field, in the privacy of his own personal life at home or behind closed doors, there was, shall we say, the facts show, a much uglier and more sinister side of his character.

“This was a private life that included a litany of physical and psychological abuse of a woman he allegedly loved.

“A woman who, in reality, if the evidence is to be believed, was treated in a way that cannot be condoned or overlooked by an adoring public or the law.

“This is a story of control and coercion from a woman who believed she was loved and respected; Unfortunately, the reality was very different.”

The attorney continued, “When the scales finally fell from her eyes after years of turbulence, she realized she needed to step outside of his sphere of influence.”

Mr Wright said the result of that decision to break away was the incident on November 1, 2020, when Giggs “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 once again.

“The behavior of the defendants towards her led to her making this decision in the evening and leaving early. Before returning home, she texted her sister about her plans.

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

“When she left the defendant’s home address, he came back and started arguing with her and trying to stop her.”

The prosecutor said she took his phone as a “negotiation chip” to convince him not to stop her from leaving.

A heated argument ensued and Giggs then attempted to grab her phone, which was later found hanging from a fence post in the garden of the property, Mr Wright said.

In the ensuing altercation, they wrestled on the floor together before Ms Greville’s sister intervened, the court heard.

Mr Wright said: “She (Emma Greville) tried to pull the defendant away from her sister. We say the defendant intentionally elbowed her in the jaw because of her pain, causing her discomfort and the shock that he was going to do violence to her and her sister.

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

“At that point, shall we say, the defendant completely lost control and intentionally headbutted Kate, causing her lips to swell and bruise. Emma then called the police, who visited the premises.”

Giggs stepped down as manager of the Wales national team in June after being furloughed 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 64 caps for Wales and is part-owner of second division side Salford City. Former Manchester United star Ryan Giggs has an “uglier and sinister side,” the court said

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