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

I

s that Subbuteo's Shaun Wright-Phillips? Crikey, I thought he'd retired. Although I guess 'Only' QPR is like a retirement home.

duckman
The Earl Grey Gossip

C

an we release him in January?

dhirt11
Gerrard: I would leave Anfield

E

xcellent! Not sure if he is any good as a manager (never thought about it) but the 'headbutt in the technical area' and what he said to Pelligrini were just brilliant, it was as if he was trying to recreate the end of the Alan Partridge Xmas special when Alan punched a man in a wheelchair and verbally abused Tony Heirs.

beachend
Football Managers On TV: Alan Pardew

Footer 365

Premier League: Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal not envious of City's star-studded squad

Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal insists he has no reason to be jealous of City's squad ahead of Sunday's derby.

Premier League: Jose Mourinho says his Chelsea team is 'not perfect'

Jose Mourinho says he is content with Chelsea's current position across all fronts but insists they can still improve.

Premier League: European players are suffering loss of street football, says Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger believes societal changes and the loss of street football has affected European players..

Mail Box

A Detailed Defence Of Alex Song And...

...lots more in a mailbox that takes in Manuel Pellegrini's woes, Steven Gerrard's future, Carlo Ancelotti, Alan Pardew and Alan Pardew's daughter. A fine read...

Is Ancelotti A Better Boss Than Mourinho?

That's one shout in the mailbox, although not as controversial as the mail imploring Jose Mourinho to sign Steven Gerrard in January so he can win the title he deserves...

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