FOOTBALL NEWS

26/05/2009 15:58, Report by Gemma Thompson

Rio won't jeopardise Reds

Rio Ferdinand says he is fit and ready to face Barcelona having fully recovered from a calf injury.

The defender has not played since the Reds' Champions League semi-final second leg at Arsenal but at United's pre-match press conference in Rome, Ferdinand confirmed his availablity for Wednesday.

"I’ve been training for three or four days without a problem so I’m fine," said Rio at Stadio Olimpico. "I’ve been working hard with the physios at the club, training hard and working on the injury.

“I spoke to the manager. He knows I wouldn’t put myself in a position to play in the game if I wasn’t 100 per cent fit because we’ve got a talented squad.

"If my fitness was ever going to be detrimental to the team and the result, then I wouldn’t play. I wouldn’t do that to the team. The team winning is more important than an individual playing in a cup final."

However, the thought of potentially helping United to a second UEFA Champions League and Barclays Premier League double has clearly focused Ferdinand's mind on his recovery.

"That’s why we’re here, that’s what we want to do," said Rio.

"Until you do that, you don’t really know where it puts you in the list of great teams. We just want to win it. It’s up to you guys (the media) to determine where you place us in football history. It’s not for us to say we’re this or we’re that, we’re not here to do that. We just to win whatever competition we’re in, and we’re in a big one tomorrow."

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