Sport Premier League

Wednesday 17 September 2014

Ferdinand: Van Gaal wanted me out of United

Published 28/07/2014 | 19:40

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A change of manager at Manchester United from Ryan Giggs to Louis van Gaal led to the club telling Rio Ferdinand they did not want him anymore, the 35-year-old defender said on Monday.

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The centre back has signed a one-year contract at promoted Premier League side Queens Park Rangers having spent 12 trophy-laden years at Old Trafford.

"When Ryan Giggs took over the job at United...he made it clear to me that I'd have been a part of his plans," Ferdinand told reporters after he was unveiled at Loftus Road.

"Things in football change quickly. A new manager came in and things went a different way.

"I made it clear at the time - Manchester United had to tell me they didn't want me for me to leave the club and that was always the way it was going to be.

"That's what happened at the end of the season. The club said thank you and goodbye. That happens in football. The club's bigger than any player and I'm happy to be here now."

Ferdinand said he was looking forward to a new challenge with Rangers and relishing the fresh start under Harry Redknapp, his first manager at West Ham United.

"I had various offers from different places in the world. But when Harry made the call, it was easy. I started my career under him at West Ham so this is a fairytale finish.

"I don't think I've got anything to prove to anyone. I love playing in the Premier League and my competitive edge was an overriding factor in staying in this country and playing here."

Redknapp said of the veteran defender: "He's a class act on the field and off the field. On the training ground he'll be a great role model for the young players - the way he trains and the way he conducts himself. He'll be great for the club."

Former England captain Ferdinand was clear about Rangers' objectives in the Premier League after bouncing back up at the first attempt.

"We need to get points on the board as quickly as possible and hopefully after a successful season here, we'll be staying in the Premier League.

"Any team that comes up from the Championship, their main priority is to consolidate and stay in the Premier League. That's our goal for this season.

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