Star-struck students at The Albion Academy in Salford got the surprise of their life this week when Ryan Giggs joined them for a kickabout.
Pupils at the London Street school reacted with disbelief on Wednesday afternoon when the the Manchester United assistant manager snuck into the main sports hall to surprise them.
A one-minute video clip was posted on Twitter and Facebook on Wednesday afternoon and already had over 29,000 likes.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) October 15, 2015
The visit was to launch The Albion Academy as an official partner with Manchester United Foundation, the charitable arm of the Old Trafford club.
Giggs moved to Salford from Cardiff at the age of six before joining Manchester United in his teens.
He took part in a coaching session on keeping the ball before wowing pupils with an exclusive question-and-answer session.
“Today was a big thing for me” said 15-year-old Cameron.
“I’ve been a United fan ever since I was little and to meet one of the most decorated footballers of all time was amazing.”
During the visit Giggs spoke of his joy at returning to the area.
“It’s great for me to come here to Salford.
“I grew up around here and spent most of my childhood around Littleton Road and The Cliff then going on to the first team.
“You can’t get any more Salford than where we are now so it’s great for me personally to come to places like this and make that little bit of difference to the students and teachers.”
Headteacher Jenny Langley was thrilled to have the United legend at the school.
She said: “My job as an educator is to teach young people how to make the most of what they do in their lives and when somebody like Ryan Giggs comes in to celebrate the work of the Foundation, and to contribute to the work of the school, it sends a huge message that shows you can achieve anything.”
The Manchester United Foundation partner schools programme bases full-time coaches in local schools to work with the pupils, staff, local primaries and within the community to build lasting relationships.
“The Foundation does great work; it has done over the years and continues to do so now, it’s great to see them in partnership with The Albion Academy giving them quality coaching sessions and supporting the students in many other ways,” Giggs added.