Sport

Rio Ferdinand ranks Manchester United teammate Michael Carrick as most ‘underrated and undervalued’ in league

By Pippa Field

Unassuming midfielder Michael Carrick has not always grabbed the headlines among a talented Manchester United midfield but Rio Ferdinand believes his teammate deserves more recognition.

The 31-year-old has been one of United most consistent performers this campaign, with only left-back Patrice Evra making more appearances than Carrick’s 33.

But while everyone in the Reds dressing room recognises his talents, defender Ferdinand argued his England teammates’ performances are not appreciated further afield.

“He is the most underrated and undervalued player in the league,” he told PA Sport.

“But he is valued highly by each member of our squad, don’t worry about that.”

With Paul Scholes nearing the end of his career, the former Tottenham player – who moved to Old Trafford in 2006 – has stepped up to the plate.

But Ferdinand said Carrick, capped 26 times for England, should have received praise for his work long before now.

“With Scholesy not playing as many games the responsibility has gone to Michael. And he has stepped up,” he added.

“He has handled it superbly. You just wish players like that didn’t have to go through their careers searching for accolades.

“You would like to think people would give them out. That hasn’t been the case with Michael, which is unfortunate.”

Drawing on a recent example, Ferdinand highlighted the role Carrick played in putting his side ahead in their 2-2 FA Cup draw with Chelsea.

His clever pass played in Javier Hernandez for the Mexican to score, and Ferdinand wants to see the midfielder’s sterling work properly appreciated.

“I am sure no-one will talk about it,” he said.

“It will be swept under the carpet and all the talk will be about other players who maybe do a little bit more explosive things than Michael does.

“He is a little bit laid back. He plays at his own pace. He goes unnoticed.”

Picture courtesy of Gordon Flood, via WikiCommons, with thanks.

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