Sports Shorts: New Old Trafford manager meant I was out, says Ferdinand
A change of manager at Manchester United from Ryan Giggs to Louis van Gaal led to the club telling Rio Ferdinand they did not want him anymore, the 35-year-old defender said on Monday.
The centre back has signed a one-year contract at promoted Premier League side Queens Park Rangers having spent 12 trophy-laden years at Old Trafford.
"When Ryan Giggs took over the job at United...he made it clear to me that I'd have been a part of his plans," Ferdinand told reporters after he was unveiled at Loftus Road.
"Things in football change quickly. A new manager came in and things went a different way.
"I made it clear at the time - Manchester United had to tell me they didn't want me for me to leave the club and that was always the way it was going to be.
"That's what happened at the end of the season. The club said thank you and goodbye. That happens in football. The club's bigger than any player and I'm happy to be here now."
Ferdinand said he was looking forward to a new challenge with Rangers and relishing the fresh start under Harry Redknapp, his first manager at West Ham United.
"I had various offers from different places in the world. But when Harry made the call, it was easy. I started my career under him at West Ham so this is a fairytale finish.
"I don't think I've got anything to prove to anyone. I love playing in the Premier League and my competitive edge was an overriding factor in staying in this country and playing here."
Redknapp said of the veteran defender: "He's a class act on the field and off the field. On the training ground he'll be a great role model for the young players - the way he trains and the way he conducts himself. He'll be great for the club."
Next: Bayern Munich goes Green for US Tour
Image: Rio Ferdinand greets supporters during a meet-the-fans session
Photographs: Nicky Loh/Getty Images
Bayern Munich goes Green for US Tour
Julian Green has been touted as the new face of US football but it is one few Americans recognise.
That may change this week as the Bayern Munich 19-year-old wunderkind enters the spotlight during the Bundesliga champion's heavily promoted mini-tour of the United States that features a meeting with Mexican club Chivas Guadalajara in New Jersey on Thursday followed by an Aug. 6 game versus Major League Soccer All-Stars in Portland, Oregon.
For a young man who has yet to earn a first team spot with talent-packed Bayern and played only a handful of minutes for the United States in Brazil at the World Cup, Green arrives in his homeland burdened with great expectations having made an impression on the people who matter most.
A sensational goal in a 2-1 last 16 loss to Belgium in Brazil underscored Green's considerable skill and rewarded U.S. coach Juergen Klinsmann for putting his faith in him.
More importantly, Green's play has made an impact on Bayern boss Pep Guardiola, who says he expects the teenager to be with the big club when the Bundesliga season begins.
"He stays with us," Guardiola said in a recent conference call to drum up interest in the tour that is being billed as the Audi Football Summit. "I think he’s going to stay (the season) but we have to see how is the market, if one player is back or what players come in.
"We have time ... my first idea is that he’s going to stay for the rest of the season."
Next: Van Gaal relishes task at United
Image: Julian Green (right) of the US gets the ball past Turkey's Gokhan Gonul (left) and Hakan Kadir Balta
Photographs: Mike Segar/Reuters
Van Gaal relishes task of emulating Ferguson at United
New coach Louis van Gaal has welcomed the challenge of trying to emulate the great Alex Ferguson at Manchester United and is confident his record of managing big clubs will stand him in good stead.
Ferguson won 38 trophies in 26 success-laden seasons at Old Trafford and the task of following in his footsteps proved too much for his immediate successor David Moyes.
Moyes was sacked in less than a season after breaking a host of unwanted records as United finished seventh in the Premier League campaign that ended in May.
"I had to follow Bobby Robson at Barcelona and that year he won three titles," Van Gaal told reporters on Monday during the club's pre-season tour of the United States.
"I have been at Ajax – the biggest club in the Netherlands – I went to Barcelona – the biggest club in Spain – and then I went to Bayern Munich, also the number one in Germany.
"So when Manchester United came I thought I had to say 'yes'."
Van Gaal's winning mentality and intimidating style has brought comparisons with Ferguson.
"I highly respect Alex because there is not another trainer or manager who has won so many titles," said the 62-year-old Dutchman who led his country to the semi-finals of the World Cup in Brazil earlier this month.
Image: Louis van Gaal appears at a press conference with Sir Bobby Charlton as he is unveiled as the new Manchester United manager at Old Trafford
Photographs: Clive Mason/Getty Images