Manchester United not only helps turn boys into men, but it helps make men into fine men.
Prior to joining us Rio Ferdinand had somewhat of a negative reputation, but as he has matured at the club you have seen the growth in him not only as player, but as a person.
There have been a number of ups and downs in Ferdinand’s time here but the past few years have arguably been his hardest.
Injuries have begun to take their toll on field meaning his place has come under fire, whilst things have hardly been any better on the international front.
Made captain by Fabio Capello in 2010, the defender missed the World Cup having picked up an injury just weeks before the competition kicked off. Then the following March he was stripped of the captaincy as John Terry was reinstated as leader of the national team.
Ferdinand’s brother Anton is currently embroiled in a race storm after John Terry appeared to call him a ‘f*cking black c*nt’, and with United taking on Chelsea this weekend all the talk in the build up to the game centered on Ferdinand and Terry going head to head and if they would shake hands before the game commenced.
Ferdinand appeared on BBC’s Football Focus today to discuss the happenings in his life at the moment and you can’t help but feel impressed that a man associated with our club acquitted him self so well.
Some had expected/hoped Ferdinand to go on to the show all guns blazing and to have a go at Terry but he was dignified in his responses to Dan Walker and his whole demeanour just echoed how mature and responsible a man he has become.
“Anton is my little brother. We have grown up together and I have looked after him when we were kids.
“If something is going to affect him and hurt him, I am always there as a shoulder to lean on.
“In moments like this, when things are so public and you can’t really say anything, it can be frustrating.
“For my family, yes, it has been tough. At the end of the day, my brother has not brought any accusations to anyone. He is not the accused.
“But he has had to sit there and take abuse from some small-minded people, which has been very disappointing.
“I hope people see what effect that has, not just on the actual person but the people around them as well, and think before they speak.”
Ferdinand, quite unfairly, has come in for some stick for his interaction with fans as well as the media and it has lead to a clearly incorrect labelling of him as unintelligent but you would hope that this notion is dispelled with his appearance today.
Ferdinand, like the club during the whole Evra/Suarez saga, decided not to fan the flames but instead spoke sincerely on the effect the whole episode has had on his brother as well as his family.
With Anton being sent a bullet prior to QPR’s meeting with Chelsea in the FA Cup last week, you can imagine that the whole situation will have been particularly stressful and the worst thing is it isn’t over yet with Terry set to go on trial in July.
Ferdinand should be applauded for how he is dealing with this situation and even if he didn’t tear into Terry the way many of us had hoped I, like many of you, are extremely proud and happy to associate such a man with Manchester United.
The full interview can be seen here