With Rio Ferdinand’s future extremely uncertain after the final game of Manchester United’s season this summer, the legendary England and United defender is pretty relaxed about things.
Many players Ferdinand’s age, 35, have already thought heavily about the next step by this point but Rio only has one thought on his mind: keep playing.
Ferdinand’s contract expires at the end of this season at United and the stalwart, who joined the club in 2002 for $50 million which was then a world record fee for a defender, wants to carry on playing for as long as possible. Bravo.
In the past Ferdinand has been linked with countless Major League Soccer franchises as the class and skill of the former West Ham and Leeds United defender is undoubted. Can the ball-playing center back keep himself healthy enough to contribute wherever he ends up?
Recent history would suggest he has still got some gas left in the tank after playing 56 games over the past two seasons for United.
While you try and figure out if any MLS squads would be daft or clever to pick Ferdinand up this summer, our friends at Soccerly take a look at his latest comments.
Ferdinand’s current contract with United expires at the end of the campaign and there has been no suggestion as yet that he will be offered a new deal after spending much of the season out of favor with boss David Moyes, who was sacked last month. The 35-year-old did not make the match-day squad for United’s final home game against Hull under interim manager Ryan Giggs, who is set to be replaced by Holland coach Louis van Gaal after the World Cup.
But Ferdinand, who joined United from Leeds in July 2002 for £30 million ($50 million, 36 million euros), feels he still has plenty to offer, regardless of whether his future lies at Old Trafford. “I am fit, I am healthy and I want to continue playing,” said Ferdinand, who will be part of BBC’s World Cup coverage team in Brazil.
“I have spoken to a lot of mates of mine in the game and they all say the same thing — keep playing for as long as you can. The club at the moment is in a position where they can’t really make any decisions about anything. For me to be saying I want to do this or that is irrelevant, because we have got to see who becomes the new manager and boxes will be ticked from there. I just want the best solution for the club. Whatever it is, then I will respect it. After that I am open to offers. But I would rather wait and see what happens at United and then there will be a decision to be made.”
In a shocking twist, Chelsea could be prepared to bring back a former defender.
The Blues are reportedly lining up a bid for Brazilian central defender David Luiz, who exited the club two years ago to head to Paris Saint-Germain in Ligue 1. According to Daily Mail, Chelsea would pay up to roughly $41 million for the PSG centerback.
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Back in 2014, Chelsea received an astounding $65 million for Luiz from the French champions, but he has quickly grown out of favor with the club.
New manager Antonio Conte is looking to sure up the backline before end of the transfer window, and Luiz appears to be a final effort to do that after missing out on several defenders, including Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly.
AS is reporting that Tottenham could be in for Real Madrid midfielder Isco.
While Spurs currently boast one of the youngest and most promising teams in the Premier League, Mauricio Pochettino is reportedly keen on adding another playmaker into the fold as Isco’s future in Madrid is unknown.
Isco would leave on a loan deal, and while Spurs are seen as a contender for the Spaniard, Malaga is said to be interested in the player as well.
Manchester City defender Eliaquim Mangala could be on his way to Porto after joining the English side two years ago.
According to the Guardian, the 25-year-old would likely return to the Portuguese side on loan after disappointing for the Citizens since his arrival in 2014.
With the addition of John Stones this summer, Mangala has fallen further down the pecking order with new manager Pep Guardiola.
Middlesbrough has impressed at times during its return to the Premier League this season, and now the club looks to bolster its backline as the transfer window closes.
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The club announced the loan signing of Arsenal defender Calum Chambers on Tuesday, providing the Boro with a promising young player to contribute in the back.
Chambers, 21, has made 58 appearances in the PL with both the Gunners and Southampton, while also earning three caps for England.
Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka revaled his excitement over the signing, while also stating that the player addresses a big need on the backline.
“I’m really pleased,” said Karanka. “It’s a position where we’ve been working towards bringing the right player in. We haven’t been in a hurry because Calum was the player we were waiting for, and he’s going to help us a lot.”
The Gunners have been heavily criticized for not spending enough during the transfer season, however, Arsene Wenger has gotten the man he wanted to help out defensively.
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Arsenal announced the signing of Valencia defender Shkodran Mustafi on Tuesday, after the German centerback had been previously been linked to the club for some time as their top transfer target.
Mustafi will likely figure immediately into the Arsenal defense, which has also added Rob Holding this summer. The 24-year-old made over 64 appearances for Valencia while in La Liga after beginning his academy career in England with Everton.
Hope Solo hasn’t had the best couple of weeks since the U.S. Women’s National Team bailed out of the 2016 Olympics.
On Tuesday, the U.S. keeper announced her decision to take a step back from her club team as well after receiving a six-month ban from U.S. Soccer.
The veteran American shot stopper took to Twitter to make her decision known, leaving her status unknown with the Seattle Reign in the future. Solo remains under contract until the end of the current campaign, however, it is not known as to how her decision to sit out will affect her financially.
Solo wil be eligible to return to the USWNT in February, but it will be up to head coach Jill Ellis to reintroduce the 35-year-old into the fold.