Is Rio Ferdinand Too Old to Continue Playing for Manchester United?

It was nearly two years ago when Welsh wonder wizard Gareth Bale gave the White Hart Lane faithful one of their greatest international nights. His speed, flair, and precision fueled a 3-1 evisceration of Inter Milan in their Champions League group stage match. Such was Bale’s embarrassment of Inter’s right back Maicon that chants of “Taxi for Maicon” rained down on the hapless Brazilian.

Maicon recovered from that particular denouement sufficiently enough to sign with Manchester City this season. But Bale was at it again on Saturday, exposing another aging world-class defender in Rio Ferdinand. In the 32nd minute, Bale collected the ball near the half-way line and then made like a RAF Typhoon F2 towards the Manchester United goal. Ferdinand gamely gave chase but was left to choke on Bale’s chemtrail.

Spurs’ first win at Old Trafford since 1989 exposed the paucity of Manchester United’s defence. Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic were the stalwarts of United’s stingy stonewall of a backline in their Champions-League winning year of 2008. But since then both players have missed significant stretches of time, with Vidic now out again for perhaps two months. There’s no doubt that the soon to be 34-year old Ferdinand, whose 2002 transfer from Leeds to Manchester broke the British transfer record, is in decline from the peak of his powers.

Sir Alex Ferguson was so flummoxed by his squad’s failure on Saturday that he thought Batman himself was marauding on the wing for the Spurs. The top of the table in the Prem boasts a bounty of pacy young players. Ferguson has added many such players to his squad in his latest rebuilding effort, but is he in need of a new hardman to replace Ferdinand already?

10 thoughts on “Is Rio Ferdinand Too Old to Continue Playing for Manchester United?”

  1. So here is a question, how many other teams have players over 30 that we can write an article entitled “Is ________ Too Old to Continue Playing for _______?” We all know what happened and really this is an issue with MUFC not bolstering the defense during the transfer window. Without even writing an entire peice on this, we already know the answer is yes. But the reall question should be is how will SAF address this as the season progresses

  2. To be fair, I don’t know how many players let alone defenders would keep up with Bale in a foot race.

    The real issue of the play, to me anyway, is how Bale runs right through the middle of the pitch without having to avoid one tackle.

    Rio could’ve been 23, Bale would’ve dashed by him anyway.

  3. Again another stupid article. How many CBs can outrun Gareth Bale? You do realize if Rio had try to take the ball away from Bale he would have given away penalty right?? In fact Can you name me one player with faster acceleration than Gareth Bale with the ball at his feet?

    How about blaming the slow midfield which left the back exposed to Tottenham’s pace?

    1. Fergie made a tactical error with his midfield. Maybe David Luiz could run with Bale for a few yards, but if Maicon can’t run with him no one can.

      Fair play to Spurs, they came out with the intent to attack and that took United by surprise. A lot of times, if United come out flat at home there’s usually no consequences b/c the away side is playing conservatively.

  4. What article is this? Rio was fantastic against Liverpool, marking Suarez out of the game. We all know Bale has the pace and Rio dont but he’s a good defender. Afterall MUFC have enough defenders to cover for Rio when he’s tired or injured.

    1. What game were you watching? Liverpool were owning ManU until you got 2 Halsey-ref specials. Being down 1 player on a dubious straight red took “Suarez out of the game” far more than Rio.

  5. Rio’s been ‘in decline’ for a few years now, and isn’t the automatic first choice he once was, but with the injuries to the other defenders I’m glad he’s still playing. He’s been able to make up for a lack of pace with better positional play, but very few defenders would be able to cope with Bale.

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