RIO FERDINAND intends to ignore the obituaries being penned about his career.
The 32-year-old is well aware the rapid rise of Phil Jones has led to questions being asked about his own contributions for Manchester United and England.
Ferdinand was left out of Fabio Capello's squad for last week's Euro 2012 qualifier with Montenegro, the England coach subsequently confirming the defender had simply not played enough games to warrant inclusion.
That was a legacy of the hamstring injury Ferdinand suffered at West Brom on the opening day of the season, the latest in a long line of muscular problems that have plagued him since he was struck down by a back injury at the end of 2008. With Jones excelling on his debut in Podgorica and Bolton's Gary Cahill forging an effective central defensive partnership with John Terry, there are plenty who feel Ferdinand will not even get to Poland and Ukraine next summer.
But the former West Ham star has heard it all before. And after an outstanding display in Saturday's 1-1 draw at Liverpool, Ferdinand confirmed he has no desire to pay any attention.
"I have had people writing me off many times in my career," he said. "I just go out and play. I am confident in my own ability.
"Whatever anyone writes doesn't bother me whether it is good or bad.
"I wasn't in the England squad so I just have to shrug my shoulders and get on with it. I am not one to sit around and moan and mope."
If recent history is any guide, Ferdinand will be excused today's flight to Romania for tomorrow night's Champions League tussle with Otelul Galati in readiness for next weekend's blockbuster Manchester derby at Old Trafford.
Ferdinand added: "At the forefront of my mind is Manchester United and making sure we remain successful.
"I have had a couple of little niggles but I have been training hard the last couple of weeks and I feel very good."