Ferdinand excited by 'world-class' Varane's expected arrival at Man Utd

By Sports Desk July 26, 2021

Manchester United great Rio Ferdinand has expressed his admiration for Raphael Varane, labelling the Frenchman as a "genuine world-class centre-back" whose achievements speak for themselves.

The Real Madrid defender is understood to be days away from a move to Old Trafford for a reported fee of £42.7million (€50m) as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer finally finds a suitable partner for Harry Maguire.

United previously ticked another target off their transfer list when they announced the signing of Jadon Sancho, although Varane will provide much-needed experience at the other end of the pitch for the Red Devils.

And former United defender Ferdinand, who amassed 455 appearances and won six Premier League titles in Manchester, could not contain his excitement for Varane's potential arrival.

"When you watch him sometimes he almost purrs, he's got that pace, that poise," Ferdinand said on his self-titled 'Rio Ferdinand Presents FIVE' YouTube channel.

"We've signed a genuine world-class centre-back. His list of honours is ridiculous, it's as long as my arm."

Indeed, Varane does ooze class and experience, having won the World Cup in 2018 and collected three LaLiga titles and four Champions Leagues with Madrid.

Despite playing all four games at Euro 2020, the France centre-back was the only one of Didier Deschamps' defenders to not get dribbled past, while he also led LaLiga defenders in terms of aerial success last season.

Though Varane's aerial duels were also more than double any of his defensive team-mates, he also ranked second in terms of both interceptions and duels won among the club's defenders in 2020-21.

 

Ferdinand, whose £30m move from Leeds United to Man Utd was a record fee for a defender in 2002, also found time to praise former colleague Solskjaer and the recruitment by United this transfer window.

"It's a great job by the [recruitment] people at Manchester United. United have been criticised in the past, and rightly so, for dilly-dallying in the market," the former centre-back added.

"This one they were assertive, they went for their man and they got him. No doubt in my mind, he would have said to Real Madrid 'I need it, I want it, I have to go'."

Having seen Sancho join the likes of Marcus Rashford, Bruno Fernandes and Maguire, Ferdinand was adamant that Varane's transfer would be due to his own insistence to move onto a fresh challenge in England.

"What a signing. There's been talk in the transfer market since it opened up – it must have come from the player," Ferdinand continued.

"He must have wanted to leave, and be part of the new Man United way, the project that's going ahead.

"The talent they've got there, the ability to play alongside Maguire after he did so well at the Euros probably played a part. I just think he sees this as a better project than what he's got at Real Madrid now."

United get their Premier League campaign underway against Leeds on August 14 and Solskjaer will be hoping to be able to call upon both of his high-profile signings should the deal go through.

Related items

  • Paul confident in Suns depth after Booker hamstring injury Paul confident in Suns depth after Booker hamstring injury

    Chris Paul is confident that the Phoenix Suns depth can cover the likely loss of Devin Booker after suffering a hamstring injury in Tuesday's franchise-tying 17th consecutive win.

    The Suns defeated the table-topping Golden State Warriors 104-96 despite losing Booker in the second quarter after limping out of the game with a left hamstring injury.

    Phoenix head coach Monty Williams said post-game there was no update on the extent of Booker's injury but Paul, who had 15 points and 11 assists, was bullish about the side's depth.

    "Just keep playing," Paul said during the post-game news conference. "It's not one guy that's gonna fill that void.

    "We've got so many guys like Elfrid Paton who hadn’t played the last few games and he's ready, comes right not the game. Cam Johnson, he started the second half.

    "We've got so much on this depth that if somebody does go down, somebody will step up."

    The Suns defense contained the Warriors to only 18 points in the final quarter and only 42 in the second half.

    Paul added: "With Book going down early in the game, it was a next-man-up mentality. Like coach always says, keep the ball moving, that's all we tried to do."

    Booker was averaging 23.9 points, 5.1 rebounds and 4.7 assists this season, prior to the injury where he had 10 points, two rebounds and one assist to that point against the Warriors.

    The 25-year-old shooting guard had missed four games after suffering a left hamstring strain last January.

    "No, nothing yet," Williams said when asked about Booker's status. "We'll have more tomorrow."

  • Suns beat Warriors to tie franchise record 17 straight wins, Harden stars for Nets Suns beat Warriors to tie franchise record 17 straight wins, Harden stars for Nets

    The Phoenix Suns have tied their franchise record 17 consecutive wins and moved level with the Golden State Warriors at the top of the table by beating them in a 104-96 win on Tuesday.

    The Suns' record-equalling win came without Devin Booker who suffered a left hamstring injury in the second quarter and did not return.

    Deandre Ayton top scored with 24 points along with 11 rebounds while veteran guard Chris Paul had 15 points and 11 assists, but Phoenix's defense was critical to the win.

    The Warriors only managed 61 points after quarter-time, with Stephen Curry and Draymond Green finishing the game with only 12 and eight points respectively.

    Golden State had a season-high 22 turnovers, with Paul having five steals and Mikal Bridges also registering four steals.

    The result means the Suns and Warriors both have 18-3 records across the season and will meet again on Friday.

     

    Harden finds his groove

    James Harden had his third 30-point game for the season, finishing with 34 points as the Brooklyn Nets won 112-110 over the New York Knicks. Harden had a double-double with 10 rebounds, eight assists and three steals, while Kevin Durant contributed 27 points and nine assists.

    Top draft pick Cade Cunningham registered a career-high 26 points including five three-pointers as the Detroit Pistons lost to the Portland Trail Blazers 110-92.

    In the absence of Ja Morant, Jaren Jackson Jr and Desmond Bane scored 25 and 23 points respectively  to lead the Memphis Grizzlies past the Toronto Raptors 98-91.

     

    Kings struggle from range

    The Sacramento Kings only managed six triples for the entire game as they were beaten by the Los Angeles Lakers, without LeBron James, 117-92. Shooting guard Terence Davis went zero-for-four from beyond the arc. Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook had 25 and 23 points respectively in James' absence, after he entered the NBA's health and safety protocols prior to tip-off.

  • Suns overcome Booker injury to beat Warriors to tie franchise record 17 straight wins, Harden stars for Nets Suns overcome Booker injury to beat Warriors to tie franchise record 17 straight wins, Harden stars for Nets

    The Phoenix Suns have tied their franchise record 17 consecutive wins and moved level with the Golden State Warriors at the top of the table by beating them in a 104-96 win on Tuesday.

    The Suns' record-equalling win came without Devin Booker who suffered a left hamstring injury in the second quarter and did not return.

    Deandre Ayton top scored with 24 points along with 11 rebounds while veteran guard Chris Paul had 15 points and 11 assists, but Phoenix's defense was critical to the win.

    The Warriors only managed 61 points after quarter-time, with Stephen Curry and Draymond Green finishing the game with only 12 and eight points respectively.

    Golden State had a season-high 22 turnovers, with Paul having five steals and Mikal Bridges also registering four steals.

    The result means the Suns and Warriors both have 18-3 records across the season and will meet again on Friday.

     

    Harden finds his groove

    James Harden had his third 30-point game for the season, finishing with 34 points as the Brooklyn Nets won 112-110 over the New York Knicks. Harden had a double-double with 10 rebounds, eight assists and three steals, while Kevin Durant contributed 27 points and nine assists.

    Top draft pick Cade Cunningham registered a career-high 26 points including five three-pointers as the Detroit Pistons lost to the Portland Trail Blazers 110-92.

    In the absence of Ja Morant, Jaren Jackson Jr and Desmond Bane scored 25 and 23 points respectively  to lead the Memphis Grizzlies past the Toronto Raptors 98-91.

     

    Kings struggle from range

    The Sacramento Kings only managed six triples for the entire game as they were beaten by the Los Angeles Lakers, without LeBron James, 117-92. Shooting guard Terence Davis went zero-for-four from beyond the arc. Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook had 25 and 23 points respectively in James' absence, after he entered the NBA's health and safety protocols prior to tip-off.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.