Manchester United legend, Rio Ferdinand, says the club’s former manager, Alex Ferguson, warned the Red Devils players of dire consequences if they are ever caught
walking with a Citizen shirt ever again.
The warning had gone out after the club’s defeat to Manchester City.
Ferdinand said Alex Ferguson warned that any player caught defaulting will never play for the club again
He said this while discussing his experience of the Manchester rivalry with his first derby, not going to plan.
The former defender, having signed for Man United in 2002, tested his first Manchester derby a few months later, which ended in defeat as Shaun Goater scored a brace in a 3-1 win for Man City at Maine Road with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer scoring the only goal for the Old Trafford club.
According to him, Ruud van Nistelrooy was on the receiving end of Ferguson’s treatment following the defeat to City.
Van Nistelrooy was Solskjaer’s partner up front but failed to score during the encounter.
But Ferdinand has now recalled how Ferguson destroyed Nistelrooy for swapping shirts with a rival player after Man United’s defeat.
“We got beat 3-1 at Maine Road with Shaun Goater scoring two goals,” Ferdinand said on his YouTube channel.
“That was the first derby I played and the moment I realised how big it was, was in the changing room after.
“We walked in and the manager shut the door. It was quiet and then all of a sudden, he just erupted.
“Ruud van Nistelrooy, who was the God then, walked in with a City shirt in his hand and I remember Sir Alex Ferguson just absolutely unloaded on him.
“He destroyed him, saying, “if I ever see any of you walking with a City shirt ever again, you’ll never play for this club.”
“That’s how he was, he was just mad. That’s when I sat there and thought, “this is a big game, isn’t it.”
“I didn’t realise before that game and ever since then, whether you win more or less, I knew that week leading up to a derby was all or nothing.”
Meanwhile, the current Man United squad recently lost 2-0 to City at Old Trafford, following an own-goal from Eric Bailly and a strike from Bernardo Silva.