Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Ferdinand Has to Earn a Game

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Ferdinand Has to Earn a Game

Article excerpt

Byline: By Simon Stone

Sven-Goran Eriksson has guaranteed Rio Ferdinand a place at next summer's World Cup ( but the Manchester United defender still has to prove he is worthy of a starting berth for England.

Ferdinand made a welcome return to form in Sunday's memorable Premiership triumph over Chelsea at Old Trafford but doubts remain as to whether it will earn him a place in Eriksson's line-up to face Argentina on Saturday.

The last time John Terry and Sol Campbell were available for international duty, Ferdinand found himself on the bench.

But Eriksson said: "I know Rio is not in the best of form, but I have absolutely no worries about him. These things happen in football. It is normal players' form drops every now and then. I don't have any doubts about him and he will be in Germany for sure. Then, it is up to him to show he should also be on the pitch."

A combination of Ferdinand's huge profile, lengthy contract wrangle and poor recent performances have made the defender an easy target for disgruntled United supporters. …

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