Ferdinand tips familiar foes to challenge

Published Add your comment

Football News

Rio Ferdinand expects the same old rivals to be challenging Manchester United for Premier League supremacy this term.

United launch their bid for a record fourth consecutive title - and a 19th overall - against Birmingham at Old Trafford on Sunday, knowing a place in the history books may await them. But while Manchester City provide a new slant on proceedings through finance alone, Ferdinand feels the major challenge to United's dominance will come from Chelsea, Liverpool and Arsenal.

"You do assess your rivals," said Ferdinand. "It has been the same teams over the last few seasons. Liverpool were runners-up so they will be there or thereabouts again, the same as Chelsea, who have a new manager with new ideas, while Arsenal have a talented young squad."

He added: "Manchester City have invested heavily, Everton, Aston Villa and maybe Spurs will be up there as well and you might get someone coming out the pack to surprise everyone, like a West Ham.

"In the end I think the top four will be similar to last season but I have to be honest, I could not care less who is up there as long as we are there. I care about Manchester United, it is simple as that."

Ferdinand's statement will be welcomed by United fans, some of whom have been driven to distraction at the thought of City making a stern bid for some silverware. Others are a little wary about how their team will cope without the influence of £80million man Cristiano Ronaldo.

At least Ronaldo's fellow countryman Nani was able to confirm his well-being with a substitute appearance for Portugal against Liechtenstein on Wednesday. Ferguson does have injury problems though, especially in central defence.

Nemanja Vidic is definitely out with a calf problem, while his intended replacement Jonny Evans missed Northern Ireland's encounter with Israel this week after suffering an ankle injury.

Wes Brown should be available but has not played for over a fortnight since injuring a thigh during a pre-season tournament in Munich.

Craig Cathcart could be drafted in, while Ferguson would also have the option of using John O'Shea in the centre of his defence and allowing Ritchie De Laet to build on an unexpected Premier League debut at Hull last term.

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE:

Tottenham Hotspur
Craig Cathcart
Manchester City
John O'Shea
Wes Brown
Premier League
Manchester United
Cristiano Ronaldo
Nemanja Vidic
Aston Villa
Hull City
Jonny Evans
Rio Ferdinand

Article Comments

Read more

Report author of article

Please let us know if you believe this article is in violation of our editorial policy, please only report articles for one of the following reasons.

Report author


This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

Want more content like this?

Like our GiveMeSport Facebook Page and you will get this directly to you.

Already Subscribed to Facebook, don't ask me again

Follow GiveMeSport on Twitter and you will get this directly to you.

Already Following, don't ask me again

Like our GiveMeSport Page and you will get this directly to you.

Already Subscribed to G+, don't ask me again