Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand both left Old Trafford in the summer of 2014 for pastures new.
Vidic had already announced in the January of 2014 that he would be leaving Old Trafford at the end of his contract in the summer. Stating that he would also be leaving the Premier League as he couldn’t see himself playing for another English team, he eventually left Old Trafford for Serie A and Inter Milan.
In Ferdinand’s case his future was uncertain right up till the end of the season, whether the club or Ferdinand decided it was time for Rio to move on, it doesn’t really matter.
Ferdinand wanted to carry on playing in the Premier League, eventually signing on with Harry Redknapp at Queens Park Rangers. In Redknapp he was signing for the manager that gave him his chance at West Ham and he was joining a club that both his cousin Les and his brother Anton had played for in the past.
How the partnership began
Ferdinand joined United in the summer of 2002 from Leeds United for a british transfer record at the time and became the world’s most expensive defender for a second time, the fee was said to be around £29million. Up until Vidic’s arrival in January 2006, Ferdinand had numerous centre-back partners, Wes Brown, John O’Shea and Mikael Silvestre. Vidic arrived at Old Trafford from Russian side Spartak Moscow for a bargain price of £7million.
Vidic’s first partner at centre-back in his early days at Old Trafford was Wes Brown with Ferdinand was used in a midfield role as they searched for a replacement for Roy Keane.
Their first game as a pair in the centre of United’s defence came on 11th February 2006 in a 3-1 victory at Portsmouth and they would play together a further 8 times towards the end of the 2005/06 season.
Despite Vidic suffering a broken wrist that would delay his start to the season and a dislocated shoulder towards the end of the season, his partnership with Ferdinand began to flourish, as they were two of the first names on the team-sheet as United challenged for the Premier League title in 2006/07.
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