Ryan Giggs, a famous Welsh soccer player, was set to face trial Monday over accusations of coercive behavior and assault against his ex-girlfriend. However, the court decided to delay the trial until August 8 due to a lack of court space. Giggs’ lawyer, Chris Daw, told reporters that the former soccer player was “extremely disappointed” with the date being pushed back.
All parties agreed to the new August 8 date, and the trial is set to take no less than five days. Giggs pled not guilty on charges of assault and controlling behavior. His ex-girlfriend, Kate Greville, accused Giggs of assaulting her and her sister Emma at his Worsley home on November 1, 2020.
Giggs is one of the most decorated soccer players in UK history. He led Manchester United to 13 Premier League titles during his 23-year stint with the club. His soccer career was so successful that only two entire clubs have more titles than Giggs alone: one of them, naturally, is Manchester United, and the other is Liverpool.
Giggs is a high-profile celebrity in the UK, winning the BBC’s Sports Personality of the Year award in 2009.
Greville has accused Giggs of deliberately head-butting her during an argument. Greville alleges that Giggs assaulted her and her sister while inebriated, allegations that Giggs denies. “I have full respect for the due process of law and understand the seriousness of the allegations. I will plead not guilty in court and look forward to clearing my name,” the soccer star told reporters at the time.
The former Manchester United player is currently on bail under strict conditions to avoid contact with Greville and her sister.
Giggs’ trial was slated to start on January 24 at the Manchester Crown Court. However, Judge Hilary Manley announced on Tuesday that the court was facing a backlog of cases and would need to move the date. “Unfortunately, it has become necessary to vacate this trial from the list. The reason for this is because there is not a court available to accommodate this trial,” Manley explained.
She went on, noting that social distancing and lockdown orders had made these delays “a daily reality for the criminal courts.”
Giggs’ lawyer, Daw, stated that his client was frustrated with the delay. “I have of course explained the situation to him and he is extremely disappointed at the development,” Daw told reporters.
“He is grateful efforts have been made to fix the earliest possible new date.”