Rio Ferdinand insists Man United need players ‘who don’t want to get beat’, but if they do lose it ‘hurts’ and must show ‘discipline’ because ‘there’s a mole in the camp’… as he underlines why setting a new culture is a priority
- The former Manchester United centre back bemoans the current culture
- The players need to be hurting more after defeats, Rio Ferdinand believes
- You can blame the players, but manager carries the can too – he sets the tone
Ex-Manchester United centre-back Rio Ferdinand has said that a culture change is needed at the club, with players needed to be brought in who do not ‘fear’ being beaten.
United suffered a disastrous week for their Champions League hopes, losing 4-0 away at Liverpool in meek fashion before going down 3-1 away at fellow top four-chasers Arsenal.
Following the Arsenal defeat, United midfielder Jesse Lingard told Paul Scholes that the current dressing room was a ‘disaster’.
The culture at Manchester United is currently wrong, with the players not impacted enough by the defeats they suffer
Following Manchester United’s defeat at Arsenal, Rio Ferdinand laid out a six-point plan for the club to return to the top
Performances, comments and leaks have all contributed to a discussion of the overall culture at the club, with Ferdinand weighing in saying that the players do not appear to be hurt enough by defeats.
Speaking on his own Vibe With Five podcast, he said: ‘I talk about the culture all the time, and that’s number one on my list. The culture has to be right, because you need to see, first and foremost, a work ethic.’
‘You need to see a culture of people not wanting to get beat. You need to see a culture of it (losing) hurting people,’ he added.
‘You need to see a culture of discipline in the group, nothing getting out. Stuff that we’ve got in the papers, the manager (Sir Alex Ferguson) would pull the squad in immediately, and I don’t think this happens now.’
Ferdinand said of how it would have gone if Ferguson had found out about the leaks: The manager would get that squad in, tight group, get in a circle. “What’s going on here? If I find out who is leaking stories to the media,”‘ he would say.
Ralf Rangnick, the interim manager, is responsible for setting the tone amongst the squad
‘You’re standing there thinking: “I hope and I’m going to find out that no one in my team has spoken to anyone in the media, because I haven’t.”‘
‘At the moment, there’s a mole in the camp,’ he said of the current group. ‘There’s leaks coming out far too often that suggests this squad ain’t like that (puts hands together). This squad ain’t there (tight-knit).’
Re-emphasising his six-point plan for change at the club, the former central defender said players needed to be playing with more fear of not disappointing the manager and the other senior figures at the club.
Scott McTominay (right) gave an honest interview in which he said the club was not in a good moment currently
Rio Ferdinand said a culture of passing the buck had emerged amongst the players at the club
‘Setting the culture is just an absolute gimme. It’s an absolute must. You can’t have a culture at the club, which is right now of, players aren’t in fear of bad performances,’ he said.
‘The culture at the football club isn’t that of fear of disappointing the hierarchy, the manager, and stuff like that,’ he added.
‘It’s like: “I don’t play well, it’s not my fault, it’s his.” There’s no repercussions. At the moment, at the football club, there aren’t consequences for actions on and off the pitch.’
Meanwhile, Ferdinand appeared to suggest that part of the fault lay with the managers, saying that they set the ‘tone’ from which the players follow.
‘It starts there (gestures to the top). That’s why the manager is so important. People keep going: “It’s the players.” All of it needs to be working together, but the manager sets the tone,’ he said.
Jesse Lingard (right) said the dressing room at the club had become a ‘disaster’