Ferdinand says title will be vindication for Ferguson

Rio Ferdinand yesterday recalled the dark days when Ryan Giggs was booed by his own fans and Manchester United were dismissed a "spent force" while he declared his side's standing, as they attempt to move to within a point of an 18th league title at Wigan tonight, to be a vindication of Sir Alex Ferguson's rebuilding.

"Four seasons ago everyone was saying we were finished," said Ferdinand, who faces a late fitness test on a calf strain before the game at the JJB Stadium. "I remember people booing Ryan Giggs. That is how mad it was. But the manager calmed us down, told us to take our time and trust him. He assured us it was a transitional period. The results since have proved that. We have not won anything yet, but we are in a great position to do so."

The abuse from his own fans which Giggs best remembers came in 2002, though Ferdinand also encountered his fair share of criticism after he was photographed at two restaurants in April 2005 with Peter Kenyon, the former United chief executive who had signed him for the club but was by then with Chelsea.

But memories of United going three years without the title will recede further if Wigan are beaten. The emergence of the team Ferguson was assembling has proved decisive. "I never once thought this might not happen again or that it was the end of an era," Ferdinand said. "You just have to trust the manager. He has been so successful, so not to have done that would have been crazy."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Latest in Sport
Sport
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific