Rio aiming to emulate Keane

Ferdinand hoping to draw inspiration from Red Devils' legend

England's newest captain Rio Ferdinand is hoping some of Roy Keane's attributes have rubbed off on him when he leads out his country against France.

The Manchester United defender was given the captain's armband by Fabio Capello for Wednesday's international friendly against France at the Stade de France, live on Sky Sports 1.

Ferdinand is honoured to accept the captaincy, although it is one of the Red Devils' greatest skippers that the former Leeds man is hoping to emulate.

The 29-year-old is hoping he will be similar in style to Keane and not only lead by example, but also put himself in the firing line when questions need to be answered.

"Roy Keane was a fantastic captain. He led by example and played ever so well, getting marks of seven, eight or nine out of 10 every game," said Ferdinand.

"He was a man amongst men and, if questions need to be answered he was normally the first or second person to do that. He was a great captain and symbolic of Manchester United.


"Now for me to get the captaincy for my country is a dream come true and this is the biggest honour I've ever had.

"Of course, winning titles is unbelievable as well but I don't think you can compare the two to be honest. This is a great honour in itself.

"How many people are named as England captain? Not many and to be named alongside list of illustrious players is a great achievement in itself.

"I'll be wearing that armband with as much pride as anyone in the past."

Ferdinand has had somewhat of a chequered past after missing eight months of action for missing a drugs test, but he believes the trials and tribulations in his life have made him a better player.

"I think everyone goes through ups and downs, not only in their careers but in their lives. It is how you come out of those situations that is important," he continued.


"Do you learn, do you take things on board and use it to your advantage in whichever way you can? I feel I've applied myself in the right manner whenever a situation has gone against me - and I will continue to do that.

"What do I say to people who say I shouldn't be captain? The easiest way to say it is the past is the past. People move on in their lives and mature, step up to the plate and become better people for having been through those situations.

"If someone does something wrong in their life, do you shut the door on them totally? I don't think that is the right way.

"I am sure this manager hasn't looked into the past and taken things in the past into account. He sees what he sees in the present and he deems me the man at the moment to wear the armband."