Ferdinand: ‘There is loads more to come’ from in-form Man Utd star

Lewis Oldham
Ferdinand speaks on Man Utd

Rio Ferdinand has praised Manchester United duo Jadon Sancho and Cristiano Ronaldo ahead of their Champions League tie versus Atletico Madrid.

Man Utd host Madrid in the second leg of the round of 16 on Tuesday night. The rivals drew 1-1 when they met in Spain three weeks ago.

Ahead of the return game, Ferdinand has praised Sancho and Ronaldo. The latter netted a hat-trick as United beat Tottenham 3-2 on Saturday.

Ronaldo heads Premier League winners and losers

Ronaldo returned to Man Utd last summer from Juventus. Earlier in the window, Sancho signed for the Red Devils from Borussia Dortmund for £73m.

Sancho struggled at the start of this season but he is in great form of late. He has been involved in five goals from United’s last six Premier League games.

Ferdinand thinks the Englishman benefitted from his “adaption time” at the start of this campaign:

“Jadon Sancho, form wise, is in the best form he’s been in in a Man Utd shirt, and I think there’s loads more to come from him,” Ferdinand told 90min.

“He has had the adaptation time and I think we’re seeing the benefits of that now. He’s fitter as well. He’s one of those in recent games you’ve looked to for that spark, that bit of quality.

“But you can’t go into a Champions League game being Man Utd in the way they are, in the form they’re in, without Cristiano Ronaldo and what his competition means to him.

“Without him, they’re not in this game. They don’t play this game – they’re already packed up and in the Europa League. He’s been the most decisive player in the Man Utd team in this competition.

“There’s certain players that when they go to get into a certain competition, whether it’s FA Cup for certain people or whatever [it is], the Champions League is Cristiano Ronaldo – the most decisive player that’s ever played in the Champions League.

“He owns this competition, and the numbers tell you that.”

Ferdinand added that Man Utd must be a “cohesive unit” to beat Atletico Madrid:

“They need to match them – in terms of energy and work ethic.

“They have to be tight, and a close unit at the back. They’ve got to communicate, and then they’ve got to be clinical and decisive when they get the chances up front. Because they will create chances. We saw against Manchester City recently, as bad as they played and as bad as the result was, they still created chances in that game.

“We know they’ve got players capable of doing that, but they’ve got to be a cohesive group, a cohesive unit playing together, and not play in moments.”