Rio Ferdinand has praised the forward thinking approach of Manchester United, and says that Sir Alex Ferguson's ability to continue evolving the squad means the club can remain a force for many years to come.
Following the recent retirement of Red Devils stalwarts Edwin Van der Sar, Gary Neville and Paul Scholes, Ferguson was quick to move for goalkeeper David de Gea, defender Phil Jones and winger Ashley Young, concluding excellent business in the summer transfer market.
"This is a club that always evolves," Ferdinand told reporters in Boston on the club's pre-season tour of North America.
"Ever since I've been here it's been like that. And that's the most important thing. It's not about you as an individual or your personal feelings. It's about the club improving and continuing the success we've had over the years."
Ferdinand was sad to see the curtain come down on some of the club's most decorated players, but as one era ends another begins at Old Trafford, with the new crop of stars already getting down to business for the new season.
"It's great to see the great young players we've got coming through in the youth team and the reserves," he continued.
"And when the manager adds players of the quality of Phil Jones, Ashley Young and David De Gea, it can only improve the squad and hopefully ensure continued success."
Preparation for that planned success in 2011/12 starts tomorrow as Manchester United kick off a five-game, three-week visit of the United States with a friendly match against New England Revolution at the Gillette Stadium, Boston.
"It's our first game," Ferguson explained. "Obviously our preparation isn't 100 per cent. We only started medical testing on 4 July and then had a couple of days' training.
"So we're maybe a little bit short [of where New England will be, fitness-wise, given they're in the middle of the MLS season], but we have a good squad with us.
"We expect a really difficult game. We look forward to it and I hope we do ourselves justice."