Ferguson expects Man Utd defender Ferdinand to sign deal

 

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson expects central defender Rio Ferdinand will sign a contract extension at Old Trafford.

The 34-year-old joined United for a then-British record £30m from Leeds in 2002 but his current deal expires at the end of this season.

However, when asked if Ferdinand would be signing a new contract, Ferguson said: "That is a strong possibility."

Midfielder Ryan Giggs, 39, agreed a new deal at Old Trafford earlier this week.

And Ferguson is keen to keep another of his more experienced players, who has been rumoured to be joining teams in the United States and China.

"I think he has had a great season," said the Scot.

"He has managed himself the right way and we have contributed to that in the preparation we give him.

Rio Ferdinand

Rio Ferdinand joined Manchester United in July 2002

"He doesn't play every game in the same way that Ryan doesn't play every game.

"But in terms of key matches he has been absolutely brilliant.

"Two weeks ago, against Real Madrid, he was excellent so we need to get him ready for the big one [the Champions League last 16 second leg tie against Real Madrid] on Tuesday."

Ferdinand, who has won 81 England caps, is managing a long-standing back complaint and has not been picked for the national team since June 2011.

However, he has remained an integral part of the Manchester United side, playing 24 times this season and helping his club to a 12-point lead at the top of the Premier League and into the last 16 of the Champions League.

During his time at Old Trafford, Ferdinand has made 420 appearances in all competitions and won the Premier League five times, the Champions League once, the Club World Cup once and the League Cup on three occasions.