Rio Ferdinand has explained why Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola is the manager he would have ‘loved’ to have played under during his career.
Ferdinand spent over a decade at Manchester United under the guidance of Sir Alex Ferguson, and later David Moyes, winning a host of major honours including six Premier League titles and the Champions League.
The former England international also played under the likes of Sven-Göran Eriksson and Fabio Capello at international level, but believes Guardiola’s famed philosophy would have ideally suited his talents.
“Pep Guardiola,” Ferdinand said on the 606 Savage Social, when asked who he would have liked to play under.
“The way that he coaches would have suited me perfectly. I would have loved to have played under him in a way that you start the attacks.
“I used to come off the pitch sometimes and me and [Nemanja] Vidic would have been walking down the tunnel and we’ve won three or four nil and I’m fuming.
“He’s asking me what’s wrong and I’m saying I hadn’t touched ball. He’d say: ‘Rio, we’ve won, what are you talking about, we’re happy, we’ve had nothing to do’. I’ve come to play football, mate, I don’t want to just stand there.
“So in Pep’s team, it’s all about building from the back, dominating possession and having loads of the ball. I would have loved to sit in the changing room as a fly on the wall and just listen to him.”
Ferdinand did recently reveal he was in fact ‘close’ to a move to Barcelona in 2008, having been approached by the club’s former manager Frank Rijkaard after a Champions League semi-final meeting between the Catalan side and United.
Rijkaard departed the club later that year and was replaced by a young Guardiola in his first senior management role, where the Spaniard oversaw a hugely successful spell that ironically included two Champions League final victories over the Red Devils in 2009 and 2011.