A week before winning the Champions League in Moscow, Rio Ferdinand signed a five year contract with United. With Nemanja Vidic, he formed the best defensive partnership in Europe that season and it was great to see him commit his long term future to the club.

Ferdinand turns 35-years-old later this year and his contract is set to expire in the summer. There have been plenty of rumours linking him with a big money move to America or the Far East, where he would be paid more money and offered greater job security than the one year extension United offer players over the age of 30.

Following Giggs signing his new contract yesterday, Ferguson hopes that Rio will be next to follow suit.

“That is a strong possibility. It would have to happen before the end of the season,” Ferguson said. “I think he has had a great season. He has managed himself the right way and we have contributed to that in the preparation we give him. He doesn’t play every game in the same way that Ryan doesn’t play every game. But in terms of key matches he has been absolutely brilliant. Two weeks ago, against Real Madrid, he was excellent so we need to get him ready for the big one on Tuesday.”