Ferdinand claims £212m duo would chose Man Utd over ‘stagnating’ Liverpool

Joe Williams
Man Utd legend Rio Ferdinand takes a drink of his coffee

Rio Ferdinand thinks Jude Bellingham and Declan Rice would both choose Man Utd over Liverpool if offers were on the table from both clubs.

The Red Devils have had a good season under Ten Hag so far with the Dutchman already having something to show for his time at the club after Man Utd beat Newcastle in the Carabao Cup final last weekend.

Liverpool have been having a terrible time this season but Klopp’s side have regrouped in recent weeks to gain ten points from their last four matches and climb up to sixth.

Man Utd and Liverpool are both likely to improve their midfield in the summer transfer market with Borussia Dortmund’s Bellingham and West Ham’s Rice linked to both sides.

But Ferdinand doesn’t think there is any doubt that Bellingham and Rice would be more keen on joining Man Utd than they would arch-rivals Liverpool.

“If you put the two teams on a graph, Manchester United are going in one direction and Liverpool have stagnated,” Ferdinand told BBC Radio 5 Live.

“I wouldn’t say Liverpool are in decline, but other teams are catching them up and maybe going beyond them. If I’m a player, say Jude Bellingham or Declan Rice – two of the most in-demand English midfielders that may get moves this summer – and someone says, ‘Manchester United or Liverpool, where are you going?’, forget my Manchester United ties, I have to go with United right now.

“The way the team looks, the way the squad is shaping up, the way the managers are navigating their teams’ fortunes and who I see being more successful in the upcoming future – I really would be sitting on the side of United.”

Liverpool host Man Utd on Sunday in the Premier League with Jurgen Klopp delighted to have Fabinho back to near his best.

“He is. It’s obvious. Now everybody can see Fab is getting back; that’s exactly what we need obviously,” Klopp said after of the match at Anfield.

“You cannot explain it really, it’s just there, it happens. I was so happy about the last game of Fabinho, to be honest. So happy.

“So many things were exactly like we need from him – bringing the long foot in here and all these kinds of things.

“It was a really good game and that’s exactly how we were used to having him: ‘the lighthouse’, ‘the hoover’, all these kinds of things.

“There’s a point when you take things just for granted, you lose the ball there (and you think) ‘Yeah, no problem, because there is Fabinho’ and we have the ball again.

“Of course you miss these kinds of things in moments when it’s not there and how can you be prepared for that? We don’t have five number sixes in the club.

“It was really good and I’m really happy for him and happy for us that he looks really like the old one again.”

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