Ferdinand, now 40, signed for the Red Devils in 2002 and became the most expensive British footballer in history at the time. His move from fierce rivals Leeds United sent shockwaves around the Premier League but Ferdinand answered his critics and cemented his place as a club legend in the process. He went on to don the famous red shirt on over 300 occasions – but not before some stern words from his manager.
Speaking on 2015 Netflix documentary “Sir Alex Ferguson: Secrets of Success” he revealed how Sir Alex issued him a clear warning about his conduct.
He explained: “When I signed for United, I twisted my ankle in my first ever game so I was out for about six weeks.
“So I got to know the city a little bit better than I probably should have.
“Just as I got back to fitness, I went out on the training pitch and saw the manager was waiting for the players to come out.”
However, his antics off the pitch would come back to haunt him after a frank discussion with the fiery Scotsman.
Ferdinand continued: “He said ‘Rio, let me talk to you son’ and I said ‘what’s it about boss?’
“He said ‘are you enjoying the city? Is it alright? Have you been out anywhere or anything?’
“I said ‘yeah, I’ve not been out to be honest with you boss. I’ve just been to a couple of restaurants and taken it easy – just chilling out really.’
“He said ‘oh good, just make sure we get off on the right foot.
“‘I know you’ve been over-indulging in the nightclubs, going out here and there.
“‘People tell me these things, you can’t hide any of this from me.
“‘Just make sure now, you know that I know and it doesn’t happen any more if you want to stay at this club for a long time. Go on, go to train.’
“I was like ‘oh my God!’”
He clearly took the words to heart, too.
Ferdinand went on to win six Premier League titles, two League Cups, one Champions League and one Club World Cup.
Sir Alex was known for his fiery temper during his time at Old Trafford.
His dressing room rant before United’s 1999 clash with Arsenal has become legendary.