Wembley Stadium

Next Game

England v Norway

Wednesday, 03 September 2014, 20:00

International Match

Last Game

Costa Rica 0 - 0 England

Tuesday, 24 June 2014, 17:00

World Cup Group D

Rio might be wise to end England career

TEAMtalk guest Matt Mulready assesses Rio Ferdinand's England snub - and feels staying in the international wilderness might be best for him.

Last Updated: 22/03/13 at 14:15 Post Comment

Rio Ferdinand: Might be best to stay out of international arena

Rio Ferdinand: Might be best to stay out of international arena

I would love to know what is going on in Rio Ferdinand's mind right now.

Today, while his England team-mates are playing against San Marino, a squad he was called up for, Ferdinand finds himself in Qatar, talking about the game on the Al Jazeera network.

A couple of years ago, due to his inconsistent form, it wouldn't have been a stretch to conceive Ferdinand entering retirement and pursuing a career in the media. However, such is his current form - guiding Manchester United to the verge of a record 20th and his sixth individual Premier League title - the defender is currently sat on the periphery of ending his international hiatus. Roy Hodgson had no choice but to give Ferdinand, the man he dropped prior to Euro 2012 in favour of John Terry for "football reasons", a reprieve.

The head coach described Ferdinand as the "the right man to do the job for England" and as such he invited the defender to be part of his England squad for the games against San Marino and Montenegro.

The stage was set for England to welcome Ferdinand back - but hopes were dashed, despite guarantees from Rio's club manager, Sir Alex Ferguson, that Ferdinand would "join up" with the Three Lions set-up.

Ferdinand's refusal to play, due to a 'unique personal program' that protects his injury-prone back, has given Hodgson his own back (line) nightmare. John Terry has now retired, Gary Cahill is injured and the remaining options aren't seen as international quality.

It now looks like the power has shifted, with Ferdinand seemingly calling the shots. Hodgson's Euro snub and now this latest episode illustrates that the player and manager aren't afraid to air their 'football laundry' in public.

Ferdinand's justification for withdrawing seems even more bizarre given that he has made the 15-hour round trip to Qatar to be a pundit. This is further reinforced by the fact that only months previously, he was almost pleading for Hodgson to end his 21-month international exile. 

Ferdinand, almost in desperation, said: "If I get picked I'd pack my bags and go straight there". Hodgson took his time but delivered on his part, only for Ferdinand to snub him, making it 1-1 between manager and player.

So was Hodgson too late or was Ferdinand exacting revenge?

Both parties have been quick to dismiss this as a disagreement. Ferdinand has ironically kept the door ajar for future call-ups, and Hodgson has praised Ferdinand's honesty and reinforced the player's desire to win more caps.

But staying in the international wilderness could possibly be the best decision.

Ferdinand has to look no further than team-mates Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs to see how international retirement can prolong careers.

Scholes and Giggs are 37 and 39 years old respectively, and find themselves defying logic by still competing at the highest level.

Ferdinand could and probably should follow their lead, safe in the knowledge he was wanted by the national set-up.

It will be interesting to see what unfolds in the forthcoming weeks and months. It's hard to call what happens next.

Nobody but Ferdinand knows of his true international desires. If he does decide to place 'club before country', he won't be the first, and certainly won't be the last.

TEAMtalk Facebook Fan Page

The TEAMtalk fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

T

his is brilliant! All these years of moral ambiguity, grey areas of offence and context..now we have a simple, easy to follow guide to right and wrong. What did you do today? I kicked the face off a panda . Oh well, you didn't rape, kill anyone or abuse a minor, knock yourself champ.

megabrow (cufc)
Redknapp leaps to Mackay defence

I

wonder if he'd feel the same way if he wasn't a white, non-jewish heterosexual male. Because Mackay has basically insulted everyone else!

Jay_D
Redknapp leaps to Mackay defence

C

heers Harry. I was wondering if he'd murdered anyone

Ezy_Rider
Redknapp leaps to Mackay defence

Footer 365

England boss Roy Hodgson sets his sights on winning Euro 2016

Roy Hodgson has put England's awful World Cup display behind him and has set his sights on winning Euro 2016.

Malky Mackay apologises for offensive texts while Cardiff manager

Malky Mackay has issued an official apology for sending offensive text messages during his time as Cardiff manager.

Dutch Eredivisie: Ajax v PSV preview

Ajax hope to steal a march on title rivals PSV when the two sides clash at the Amsterdam ArenA on Sunday, live on Sky.

Mail Box

More Fan Mail For Football365...

'Just p*ss off with your righteous indignation will you. W*nkers.' There's a lot of anger going around for what should have been a sleepy Friday afternoon at F365 Towers...

Man United: One Game To Save Season

They have one match to convince decent players that they are worth joining - over to you, Louis. We also have mails on Malky Mackay, Mario Balotelli and Tim...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property