Fergie: Rio can handle abuse

Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson does not believe Rio Ferdinand will be affected by any abuse from fans as a result of his recent withdrawal from the England squad.

Last Updated: 30/03/13 at 09:01 Post Comment

Sir Alex Ferguson (left): Backing Ferdinand to handle fans' abuse

Sir Alex Ferguson (left): Backing Ferdinand to handle fans' abuse

The 34-year-old defender was the subject of alleged racial abuse from England supporters during the recent World Cup qualifier from San Marino, which has led anti-racism campaigners FARE to report the Football Association to FIFA.

Ferguson believes the defender is strong enough to cope should he receive similar treatment from the stands while on duty with United.

"If there is criticism out there I don't think it will bother him," said Ferguson.

"In modern society there is always a venting of spleen against someone who displeases them at any particular moment in time. It will blow over quite quickly.

"Most people realise Rio's international career had been in doubt for a while anyway. He hadn't been picked for a few games."

Ferdinand cited his training programme as the reason for his England withdrawal and Ferguson defended his player's decision.

"The way our physio and sports science departments had been handling him has been correct," said Ferguson. "That has allowed him to have one of his best seasons. That is why Roy has picked him.

"But there is a way we treat Rio in terms of getting him ready for big matches.

"The programme we have got for him is detailed in the sense of the games he plays in and the type of training he does in the build-up to games.

"We don't play him in every game, as everyone knows. We try to have him ready for the games that really matter."

When asked whether Ferdinand would play for England again, Ferguson replied: "I couldn't tell you. I have not spoken to him about it.

"He has had issues with his back obviously. Age catches us all. There is no question about that. In football you don't grow old without penalties.

"Rio has lost that lightning speed he had five or six years ago. But he has adapted in a different way in the sense of how his game is.

"You have to adjust to the situation and Rio has done that very well."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

A

ll he wants are sharks with frickin lazers on their heads. Is that too much to ask?

mufc phil
Bomb threat on FIFA D-day

W

hy is the dinosaur trying to hold on to this.... Just leave... No one wants you in this position you corrupt loser. Let someone else take over....

arsenal121
Defiant Sepp blames minority

N

ow is the time for Allardyce to finally get a chance at a big club please. He is likely to have a number of great offers for his services this summer, but who will he choose? Will it be Liverpool, Real Madrid, Dortmund or Man City?

medina_sod
Allardyce leaves West Ham

Footer 365

Craig Cathcart out to build on a special 12 months

Northern Ireland and Watford defender Craig Cathcart wants to build on a memorable year for club and country.

Tim Sherwood defends Arsene Wenger's record at Arsenal

Tim Sherwood has praised Arsene Wenger's Arsenal record ahead of the FA Cup final after past criticism of the Frenchman.

Arsene Wenger keen to focus on future ahead of FA Cup final

Arsene Wenger will continue to look to the future, rather than reflect on past glories, if Arsenal can win his sixth FA Cup.

Mail Box

Players Must Stand Up For Qatar Boycott

Players, not bureaucrats, hold the key to boycotting Qatar. Also in the afternoon mailbox: Wenger is right to rotate, Zlatan can dribble, and it's Barca v Ajax in the budget final...

What Would You Do If You Were Blatter?

Step into Sepp's shoes, is the invitation from one mailboxer. Also: United already have their new number one, Rodgers deserves time, and the best Budget XI so far...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company