Manchester United unveil Rio Ferdinand testimonial plans

Premier League champions to face Spanish side Sevilla

Rio Ferdinand's testimonial will see Manchester United host Spanish side Sevilla on August 9.

Centre-back Ferdinand has been with United since the summer of 2002 and last month he signed a new one-year deal that will extend his time at Old Trafford into a 12th season.

In a statement released this afternoon by his testimonial committee, the 34-year-old said: "This is going to be a big night for me as well as an emotional one.

"I cannot believe where those 10 years have gone and I am lucky to have spent them here at Manchester United.

"This club is unique in every way, the history and drive of the place is unbelievable, it spurs everyone to succeed.

"The fans are the best in the world, their commitment is amazing and I have appreciated their support throughout my career. I hope they enjoy the night as much as I intend to."

Sir Alex Ferguson, whose near 27-year spell as United manager has come to an end with his retirement this summer, said: "It is great that the club are granting Rio a testimonial for his services to the club.

"He is one of the best central defenders this club has seen.

"Rio has a natural ability to read the game and I said last month that I believed that this season has been the best of his Manchester United career.

"It will be a fantastic night for him and the fans but it also gets next season's campaign off to a great start."

Ferdinand has made 432 appearances for United in all competitions, scoring eight goals.

Among the trophies he has won with the Red Devils are six Premier League titles and the 2008 Champions League.

PA

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