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Friday 15 December 2017

Dunne's number is up with Rio arrival at Rangers

Queens Park Rangers' Rio Ferdinand. Photo: Adam Davy/PA Wire
Queens Park Rangers' Rio Ferdinand. Photo: Adam Davy/PA Wire

RIO Ferdinand has laughed off suggestions of a possible rift with Richard Dunne after the former England man was given the No. 5 squad number by QPR for next season - the jersey worn by Dunne as Rangers won promotion to the Premier League last season.

Dunne was a key figure as Harry Redknapp's side were promoted back to the top flight from the Championship but Redknapp is spending big ahead of the new Premier League season and while Dunne remains under contract for next season, Ferdinand's arrival will put the Tallaght man under pressure.

Redknapp has already made a concession to Ferdinand, allowing him wear Dunne's No. 5 next season as the former Manchester United man has a number of business sidelines attached to the number.

"I will just have to be doing his massages every now and again and making sure his bed is right when he gets in his room, it is what it is," Ferdinand joked, also claiming that he was not after the captain's armband..

"That's not on my agenda at all. It's not something I am vying for or am eager to get my hands on."

Ferdinand agreed a one-year deal at Rangers after Manchester United allowed the 35-year-old's contract to expire at the end of last season. The former England defender was handed his first-team debut by Redknapp 18 years ago and Ferdinand admitted playing under Redknapp played a major part in his decision to move to Loftus Road.

"My competitive edge was the overriding factor along with my family coming to London and obviously working with Harry again," Ferdinand said.

"I had offers from different places in the world, including some clubs in the Premier League. My agent spoke to them and met various managers but when Harry made the call it was an easy decision for me.

"I started under him as a young player at West Ham and to finish my career playing under him again is a fairy tale finish." Ferdinand, whose trophy cabinet boasts six Premier League titles, one FA Cup and a Champions League winners medal, admits a relegation battle with Rangers poses a different sort of challenge. It's a different proposition to what I'm used to but it's a great challenge," Ferdinand said.

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