Sunday, June 06, 2010

Ferguson needs to replace Ferdinand and quite possibly Vidic too...

It was only a few days ago that this blog warned that the Old Trafford transfer bells should be ringing: Ferguson has much work to do this summer in relation to squad rebuilding, however, the manager will tell you differently, when trying to convince us he only needs one addition to his squad. The truth is, Fergie is kidding no one but himself if genuinely believes his own spin.

So for whatever reason, Ferguson is doing his level best to dampen the expectations of the fans', because the club's supporters know full well the manager needs to bring in several proven quality signing this summer; if that doesn't happen, the team that went backwards last season following the loss of Tevez and Ronaldo will just get worse. As sure as night follows day, it will happen.

To compound the manager's problems, Rio Ferdinand sustained that knee injury - one that has ruled him out of the World Cup. No one wants to see players like Ferdinand miss the World Cup, but his injury will have not have surprised United supporters. But football can be a cruel game and Ferdinand won't be the only high-profile player to miss out on this summer's World Cup.

While many supporters will feel sorry for the England captain, there's no room for sentiment when it comes to hiring and firing; managers' need to know when to off-load players before their value drops; in the case of Ferdinand, you wonder if someone like Arsene Wenger would have sold him before he became worthless in the transfer market. A case in point is Kolo Toure, the Ivory Coast star was sold to Manchester City for £12m, that was another piece of shrewd business by the Arsenal manager, because it was good money for a player who was heading over the hill.

The warning signs have been there for some time with Ferdinand, his form has been affected injuries over the last two seasons. It is damning that Capello selected Ferdinand and Ledley King in his final 23 man-squad for South Africa; it was an accident waiting to happen, but the England manager has been lucky in that he was able to bring in a quality replacement in Michael Dawson who should have been selected in the first place. If Ledley King is also ruled out to injury, which is highly likely, quite what that will say about Capello's judgement will be a good question to ask.

As far as United are concerned, Ferguson has signed Chris Smalling from Fulham - presumably as a long-term successor to Ferdinand - to say that transfer raised eyebrows is a massive understatement, because few can see what all the fuss is about. It is to hoped Ferguson's judgement and confidence in Smalling is justified.

The concerns over Rio Ferdinand's ability to continue playing at the top are very real - those concerns could well be compounded if the transfer gossip columns prove to be true, because it is rumoured Jose Mourinho wants to sign Nemanja Vidic.

Ferdinand's days numbered ....


  1. Very true. I been wanting ferdinand to be sold last season. He has been injured and getting so much money for playing so less. I still believe Vidic is the better ones and should have earn himself a better contract. I believe if we never buy any players this summer, we will not improve.

  2. KK,

    The problem is Fergie has missed the boat. Wenger would have sold Rio 12 months ago and got some value for him. Instead, Fergie dithered and did nothing and now United are stuck with another highly paid liability in the making. Football can be a ruthless game and it needs to be with the stakes so high. With the danger of sounding like a broken record Lucio was sold for just 5million Euros.

  3. I believe Fergie is not ruthlss than before. If this was in the past, he could have sell by then. Not sure if it will harm him for being mellow. I hope Fergie can realize he had not much time and he must leave the club on a high.

  4. Its a shame really. Both were fantastic last season and its really been this season where Ferdinands injury problems have become a major issue. I hate to say it but Rio is pretty much our 3rd choice centreback just because he has so many injury and fitness issues. Vidic didnt perform anywhere near the level he did the season before. It seems as if Real's sniffing around him has thrown him off his game and got him thinking of life away from old trafford. Id love for him to stay but his value will only decrease so perhaps its time to cash in on him. I just hope the price we get is fair and that the funds are actually used on a replacement rather than using the players already at the club cos I dunno about you but the prospect of Smalling and Evans as our primary defensive pair scares the bejesus outta me.

    Lucio would have been great and a bargain - for all the critisism Mourinho has gotten in the past for transfers just remember he got Snjeider and Lucio for an absolute song!
    I like the look of Simon Kaer and think he will be on the move this season. The prices rumored so far have been over the top tho and it would go higher if he has a good world cup for Denmark.

  5. indeed ferdinand is injury prone and maybe over the peak, but he is still very important for manchester united, he is a leader at the back, we still need him to pass the experience to young defender like evans, smailling, rafael etc. Vidic is good but is not a good leader as ferdinand. At the moment we could not lose another main player like ferdinand calibre anymore.

  6. Raymond,

    You cannot be a leader on the treatment table. I fear Ferdinand's career is all but over at the very highest level. When you have continual back problems, they affect other parts of your body and that is precisely what is happening with Rio. IF and it's a big IF, they can sort out his back once and for all then he has a chance. Personally, I would have sold him last summer for the right money.

  7. ferdinand is indeed injury prone, but he is still way too important to be sold, especially we sold ronaldo and tevez, losing another world class player will make man utd lose 3 world class player at one time, fergie was right to keep him last season. Besides, fergie also will not know he has been so injury prone this season. For now, unless fergie has sign a proven world class defender, i will not sell him also. he is still a important player, even off the pitct.. like in dressing room.

  8. Raymond,

    The whole point of the article is that it is too late to see Rio....

  9. i still believe man utd still need Rio at least for the 2 following season to further investigate whether evans and smailling can handle big match and their leadership at the back.. selling Rio now is not a good idea.

  10. besides, it never been too late because we shall never let him go. Besides, remember jaap stam?? fergie last time think like that, stam over the peak dy, sell him, then see what happening?? he admit he makes a mistake selling Stam, so i doubt ferige will do the same mistake again.

  11. Raymond,

    The only person who didn't realise selling Stam was a mistake was Fergie. However, on this occasion, Fergie has missed the boat. Rio, doesn't have much longer left at the top, I'd put money on it. Once your back goes then you are in big trouble. Mark my words, Ferdinand will not be at United in two years time. Remind me if I'm wrong.

  12. Sometimes you do not need him on the top everytime to be useful as man utd players, Rio may not at the top but he is still a very important player due to his organization at the back, and that is sometimes more useful when man utd play big game. I believe his experience in defense is still important for man utd not only on the pitch, but also for the development of young defender like Evans. You may recall this season our defense is shaky mainly due to his injury, what did that told us? It tells us that without Rio Ferdinand, man utd defense is still shaky. Evans is good but still need more experience to be fully developed and definitely Rio will be the person to help him. He will stay with man utd for next 2 years at least.

  13. Raymond,

    I agree Rio has been very important, but like I keep on stating, he's pretty much had it. The off-the-field influence to which you refer hasn't been much use when he's been injured as you have rightly pointed out.

    Time will tell, who is right and who is wrong.

  14. Ya, time will tell. But what i can believe is fergie will not sell him within 2 or 3 years unless he got a proven world class defender which is hard to get due to the financial restriction. So i doubt fergie will take the gamble by sell him without a proper replacement. Mark my word, even he has been always injured, he still one of the best centre defender in the world.

  15. Raymond,

    I think that should be past tense, because Rio WAS one of the top central defenders in the world.

    To be honest with you, the warning signs have been there for around 18 months. We have started to see serious lapses of concentration.

    Remember the 4-3 Manchester derby when Rio gifted the ball to City?

    Remember him gifting a couple of goals to the opposition when playing for England last season?

    Rememeber how awful he was in the CL final against Barca?

    And then we've had the injuries this season, mistakes can happen when players are not 100% fit and focused on the job in hand.

  16. No, he is still one of the best, and i will not rule him out just by a few bad game, every player has their bad game and u will not judge him bad just because a few bad game. Even John Terry also has some bad game, Buffon also has some bad game, every single player in the world will have their bad game sometimes, its too early to judge his performance just like that. anyway, it still important to keep him in the squad if u want the title back to old trafford. let player like ferdinand left man utd may just cause more chaos about glazer ruling and in the team as well.. We should still trust ferdinand and he is definitely one of the most important player for us next season as we can't afford to spend big this few season. Hence we need to keep the squad together, we can't afford to lose another world class player anymore.


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