Maradona paid a visit to Carrington today, which happens to be Rio Ferdinand’s 30th birthday. He was given a signed shirt from his idol which has seemingly got him all revved up. Hopefully he’ll still be in the same state of mind tomorrow!

“We were like school kids around a star coming to school,” said Rio. “In my eyes he is the best footballer ever. He is one of my heroes if not the shining beacon when I was a kid. I had all his videos. He was the player everyone wanted to be. He was the best. He was my idol and part of the reason why I started to play football. I can’t hold him in higher esteem than that. To be able to shake his hand, get a cuddle off him and a picture, it made my birthday.”

Ferdinand reckoned the presence of the Argie legend had a great effect on the team, with them all vying for Maradona’s attention.

“I think the gaffer would probably like him to come everyday the way he raised standards in training,” Rio added. “Everyone was trying to impress him. I hope he will go back to Argentina and say he’s seen a great player – Rio Ferdinand.”




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