England news

Ferdinand thinking only of United

July 18, 2012
By ESPN staff

Rio Ferdinand has stressed that his priority is Manchester United after he missed out on representing England at this summer's European Championship.

Rio Ferdinand
GettyImagesRio Ferdinand: An experienced head in the United defence

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Ferdinand, 33, enjoyed an impressive 2011-12 Premier League season, as he made 29 starts, but the defender was not named in Roy Hodgson's squad for Euro 2012.

Hodgson insisted the snub was due to "footballing reasons" although it was speculated that the decision was made to avoid possible tension between Ferdinand and Chelsea's John Terry.

Prior to the tournament, Terry was accused of a racially-aggravated public order offence related to Rio's brother, Anton - a charge which the former strongly denied and has subsequently been found not guilty of.

Rio Ferdinand, though, remains focused on club matters. He said: "To be honest, I'm not thinking about playing international football.

"Manchester United is at the forefront of my mind. It's my club and this is what I love doing. If anything else comes of it then so be it.

"But I don't think about anything except for playing for Manchester United and, hopefully, winning back the league."

The centre-back went on to reject question marks over his fitness, adding: "It's been well documented I had injuries over the last few seasons. But I think last season I played about 35 games for United [he played 38].

"I felt I managed myself really well in terms of my back injury, with thanks to the physios and sports science team at United. They helped me through that as well.

"Long may that continue. Hopefully this season I can continue to play a similar amount of games. That would be great."