Former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand has revealed that Sir Alex Ferguson once ‘went ballistic’ at Ruud van Nistelrooy for swapping shirts after the Manchester derby.
The two sides take on each other at Old Trafford this afternoon, with United two points behind City in their first meeting of the season.
And Ferdinand has been reminiscing over some of the heated clashes he enjoyed against the blue half of Manchester during his long and illustrious 11-year career with the Red Devils.
He has revealed that one of his first derby matches at Maine Road in November 2002, ended with manager Sir ALex Ferguson screaming at his team-mate Ruud van Nistelrooy for swapping shirts with one of his opponents after a 3-1 defeat.
Ferdinand writes in his column for The Sun:
Sir Alex went ballistic, swearing at Ruud with the hairdryer on full blast.
Ruud was standing there speechless. The message was ‘You don’t swap shirts with them after getting a beating like that’.
Ferdinand also insists that the entire dynamic of the two teams’ rivalry changed when City received new investment ion 2008, turning them into a Premier League powerhouse.
The whole dynamic changed after the takeover when the money started coming into City, the intensity and rivalry went to a whole different level. Suddenly City were relevant and the drama reached new heights.
I’d also never seen so many City shirts in Manchester before. And they started getting noisy. Where were they before? People like Noel Gallagher and Ricky Hatton started coming out of the woodwork to give it the big one as well.