Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand has paid tribute to manager Sir Alex Ferguson ahead of his final game in charge of the club.

The Scot walks away from the Red Devils on Sunday, leaving a huge legacy and daunting challenge for new boss David Moyes to rise too next season.

However, Ferdinand believes the departing chief has picked a fitting time to walk away from Old Trafford, and leaves the club in a ‘healthy situation’ for the new chief.

"I think this is the way the manager, in his dreams, would have liked to leave the club - in a fit state for someone else to come in and take the reins," Ferdinand told MUTV.

"We're not going to be looking up to other teams, we're looking down and saying: 'Come and catch us'. We're in a fantastic position. Obviously, Sir Alex's shoes are massive shoes to fill but David Moyes couldn't be walking into a healthier situation. 

“The young players here are hungry and want to win stuff. The senior players have won a lot of things but have still got the desire and the work ethic that the manager has instilled into us. I think that's vital for the future of the football club."

Ferdinand also believes that reputation will count for little when the Everton manager arrives at his new club, insisting that the senior players will be in the same boat as their younger counterparts in the first team squad.

"You've got to prove yourself under the new manager. He's going to come in with new ideas, new rules and a new regime. No matter how long we've been here, and the likes of Giggsy and myself have been here for many years, we'll be in the same boat as people like Danny Welbeck, Phil Jones and Tom Cleverley,” added the recently retired England centre back.

“So we've all got to prove ourselves to make sure he thinks we're the right people to start each game."

Ferdinand also admitted that the players have been able to let their hair down with the Premier League title in the bag, and subsequent trophy collection after victory against Swansea City on Sunday.

The 34-year-old has toned down his celebrations however, admitting that he’s much more interested in taking in the success rather than going crazy – as he did in the past.

"Now it's the end of the season and we've won the league so we can let our hair down, get the party started and we've had a good two weeks. We've had a good few nights out that are well deserved, and the manager has been great because he's let us enjoy it,” he concluded.

"I think I enjoyed my first title [in 2003] unbelievably. When I see now the pictures from the day we won it, I was going bananas! When I think about titles in between, I don't know if I went as crazy, because you take it for granted almost. 

“Now I'm towards the end of my career, I've maybe got a couple of years left and you start really thinking I've got to take it in. I think I took it in this time."

YouTube video tribute to Sir Alex Ferguson by @Aditya_Reds

#Rio Ferdinand
#Premier League
#Manchester United
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