Alex Ferguson: Rio Ferdinand not certain to honour England call up
Manchester United defender was included in Roy Hodgson's squad for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers
Following Rio Ferdinand's re-call to the England set-up, Sir Alex Ferguson has hinted the Manchester United defender may not link up with Roy Hodgson's squad.
Ferdinand has not played for the national team since 2011 and the call up for the World Cup qualifiers against San Marino and Montenegro represents the first time Hodgson has selected the 34-year-old.
The England manager has always said his decision not to call on the United defender has been for "footballing reasons", however Ferdinand's omission has been intrinsically linked with off-field matters involving John Terry and Ashley Cole.
Yet Ferguson has cast doubt over Ferdinand's involvement, appearing to hint that the United defender's fitness may be a concern.
"I was as surprised as anyone when I heard," he said today.
"I need to speak to the (United) doctor because we prepare Rio Ferdinand in a certain way and there are certain treatments he has to go through.
"He has to make sure he is going to be OK in terms of the number of games he plays.
"We have been doing that for two years and it has worked.
"We have to look at all these things before Rio decides (if he joins up)."
As Ferdinand has aged, he has been used more sparingly at United, however he recently started back-to-back matches against Real Madrid and Chelsea over a five-day period. That he was able to play in United's two biggest games of the season in such quick succession, and perform as well as he did, suggested concerns over his fitness has been alleviating.
If Ferdinand did not report it would be a minor embarrassment for Hodgson given his climbdown from previous statements that he has "moved on" from the Manchester United defender.
"The procedures have been the same all season which has given him fantastic performance levels when he's playing for us," said Ferguson.
"We have to consider that and Rio is considering that. And we'll see what the outcome of that is."
New day (slowly) rising – As Brasileirão gets underway, Brazilian football stumbles, rather than leaps into the future
The average Serie A crowd last year was 13,000 - comparable to Australia’s A-League.
by James Young
24 May 2013 04:31 PM
Monaco is a street circuit where driver ability is more important than anywhere else and if we take ...
by Gareth Purnell
24 May 2013 02:00 AM
Three weeks ago as I drove off the Eurostar, I remember thinking what a very long time it was until ...
by Martin Ayres
23 May 2013 05:29 PM
Why Manchester City were willing to fork out $500m on stake in MLS
Champions League final: Biggest German invasion since the fifth century as Borussia Dortmund face Bayern Munich
Borussia Dortmund v Bayern Munich: 50 things you should know about the Champions League final
Champions League final preview: Bayern Munich v Borussia Dortmund
Champions League Final: Can Jürgen Klopp and Borussia Dortmund stop the Bayern Munich machine?
- 1 What, let gays get married? We must be bonkers
- 2 Rocky Horror star Tim Curry 'suffers major stroke'
- 3 Exclusive: How MI5 blackmails British Muslims
- 4 EDL marches on Newcastle as attacks on Muslims increase tenfold in the wake of Woolwich machete attack which killed Drummer Lee Rigby
- 5 Farewell, Shameless. Your heirs have work to do
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Find out what The Independent's resident travel expert has to say about one of the most beautiful small cities in the world
Nook is donating eReaders to volunteers at high-need schools and participating in exclusive events throughout the campaign.
Get the latest on The Evening Standard's campaign to get London's children reading.
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.