A war of words is developing between two legends from Man Utd and Liverpool after Steve Nicol totally dismissed Rio Ferdinand’s recent cheeky comments.
Man Utd and Liverpool have combined to produce English football’s most compelling rivalry. The Reds’ domination through the 1970s and 80s gave way to an equally impressive period of success in Manchester. Throughout the next two decades, Man Utd were crowned English champions on 11 occasions. Since then, both clubs have struggled to contain the might of Man City.
Liverpool have fared better in recent years, lifting their maiden Premier League and the clubs sixth European Cup.
The most recent season was an unqualified disappointment, though a late surge did secure the riches of Champions League football.
In contrast, Man Utd enjoyed a relatively straight forward season with few bumps in the road. A place in the top four was sewn up early, though cup disappointments in the latter stages left a sour taste entering the summer.
The pair both ended the season trophyless. But Rio Ferdinand raised eyebrows with his rambunctious comments about Man Utd’s new-found superiority.
Due to finishing one place behind Man Utd, Ferdinand claimed Liverpool are now in the Red Devils’ rear-view mirror.
“I think in the league we’ve got what we wanted, which was an improvement,” the former centre-half told Goal.
“I think Man United at the end of last season finished 30-odd points behind Liverpool.
“Liverpool are now behind us and they’ll have their excuses and reasons why but the cold facts are that we have gained that much ground on them that we’ve gone past them this season.”
Predictably, those comments have not gone down well with ex-Liverpool players in the media.
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One such person to take exception is Steve Nicol. The 14-year Liverpool veteran could barely contain his disbelief with the comments when put to him on television show ESPN FC’s Extra Time.
Nicol bellowed: “What a lot of rubbish! Fallen behind Manchester United…
“Seriously? Absolutely, what a lot of rubbish. My goodness.”
Man Utd, Liverpool predicted for ‘summer showdown’
Meanwhile, Man Utd and Liverpool have been tipped for a ‘summer showdown’ over a Premier League midfielder whose value has skyrocketed since moving to Leicester.
Liverpool have been heavily linked with Leicester’s FA Cup hero Youri Tielemans as they seek a Georginio Wijnaldum replacement.
The 30-year-old seemed destined to join Barcelona, though that deal was reportedly hijacked in the eleventh hour.
Jurgen Klopp was told of the big missing trait Tielemans would bring to his midfield, but a journalist who knows Tielemans well thinks stiff competition from Man Utd will emerge.
Speaking to Empire of the Kop (via the Express), Belgian journalist Sven Claes namechecked Man Utd as a potential suitor after revealing he thinks his time at Leicester will soon be up.