United’s finest: ‘Rolls Royce’ Rio retires

Rio Ferdinand

“Excellence,” wrote Greek philosopher Aristotle, “is an art won by training.” Indeed, this is a doctrine held true by many in the game for whom hard work and a little talent has brought ample reward. Rio Ferdinand trained hard too; a professional to the last. Yet, he also boasted such a natural elegance on the pitch […]

Rio: My Decade as a Red

Rio Ferdinand

There have been times over the past decade when Rio Ferdinand seemed destined for anything but a lengthy stay at Old Trafford. It has been a journey from a £30 million transfer in July 2002, through a controversial ban and subsequent contract re-negotiation, to genuine – well almost – respect on the terraces. After all, […]

Ferdinand goes back to the future over contract extension

Rio Ferdinand

“Rio can play for two or three years,” said Sir Alex Ferguson recently, playing down a row over Rio Ferdinand’s non-appearance in a Kick It Out t-shirt prior to Manchester United’s fixture with Stoke City. Ferguson may believe that 34-year-old Ferdinand can play into his late 30s, echoing the careers of Paul Scholes and Ryan […]

Ferguson’s Ferdinand folly

Ferdinand Brothers

There was a period, for some considerable time in fact, that United Rant carried a ‘Let’s Kick Racism Out of Football’ graphic on the site’s front page. In the intervening years both Rant, and Kick it Out (KIO) have undergone brand redesign. But if the graphic was lost by accident, then the spotlight placed on […]

Ferdinand’s dignified silence in the face of Hodgson’s “total lack of respect”

Rio Ferdinand John Terry

On the Thames this past Sunday more than 1,000 boats, canoes and ships followed the Queen’s gold-adorned barge from Battersea to Tower Bridge in the first mass flotilla on London’s artery for more than 300 years. The outpouring of national pride and ubiquitous presence of the Union Flag, so infrequently displayed on these shores, was […]

Sprightly Rio dancing towards new deal

Rio Ferdinand

Rio Ferdinand is set to be offered a new contract with Manchester United after the 34-year-old defender finally overcame three years of injury trouble to once again become a key part of the Reds’ title charge this season. The former West Ham United defender had been expected to leave Old Trafford after nearly a decade […]

Jones’ class places Rio under real pressure

Rio Ferdinand, Phil Jones Manchester United

“This result tells you that we still believe in youth,” Sir Alex Ferguson said of the young side that beat Tottenham Hotspur 3-0 at Old Trafford on Monday night. And with the Scot’s young, English, lions – Tom Cleverley, Chris Smalling, Danny Welbeck and Phil Jones – performing with electrifying confidence so early in the […]

Ferdinand ready to fight ticking clock

Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand is facing up to the autumn of his career, with three young central defenders ready to challenge the 32-year-old for a place in Sir Alex Ferguson’s team. But, says Ferdinand, Jonny Evans, Chris Smalling and new signing Phil Jones will have to prove they are hungrier than the Peckham-born defender […]

Reds put boot in on Blues ahead of semi

Rio Ferdinand, Nemanja Vidic

There’s nothing quite like kicking on old foe when he’s down; a habit doing the rounds at Old Trafford it seems, with key defenders Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand cranking up the pressure ahead of this weekend’s FA Cup semi-final. Indeed, with Ferdinand claiming City’s sulking players would never make it at Old Trafford, and […]

Now Ferdinand’s England career should come to an end

Rio Ferdinand

Rio Ferdinand’s humiliation at the hands of Fabio Capello this week is not only total and deliberate but it should also lead to the 32-year-old defender’s international retirement. After all, Ferdinand’s pride at being made England captain in the wake of John Terry’s affair with Vanessa Perroncel has been shattered at the hand of Capello’s […]