Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic have been re-united out in Milan ahead of the UEFA Champions League final.
It’s brilliant to see them back together again. For me, they have certainly been the best centre-back partnership I have seen in my lifetime at Manchester United and arguably they are the best the club has ever had.
— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) May 28, 2016
In Vidic we had a brawler who was a brick wall that just swatted attackers away like they were flies and in Rio we had the Rolls Royce defender – he hardly ever needed to get out of third gear because his positioning was so spot on and he was so comfortable with the ball at his feet. Together, they were the perfect partnership.
United have certainly missed both of them since they left and I don’t think we’ve adequately replaced either of them yet. Chris Smalling is in the Ferdinand mould but we’ll all be honest in saying he’s got some way to go before comparisons with Rio are fair. As far Daley Blind, he’s not a centre-back so we’ll end that conversation there.
Hopefully that will change under Jose Mourinho because a defensive leader is going to be high up on his wish-list. I think if we can get a player who is real captain material to partner Smalling in defence then we could be onto a winner. It won’t be Rio and Vidic but I’m not sure any partnership we ever get will compare to them eh?