17/01/2012 15:00, Report by Nick Coppack
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Rio hails legends' return

Rio Ferdinand can’t wait to see two of the Premier League’s finest ever talents – Paul Scholes and Thierry Henry – on the same pitch this weekend.

Scholes, back in the United squad after coming out of retirement, and Henry, back at Arsenal on loan from New York Red Bulls, could line up against each other at the Emirates Stadium this Sunday (kick-off 16:00 GMT).

Both have already added fairytale footnotes to their careers since their surprise returns this month, with Henry netting the winner in Arsenal’s Carling Cup tie against Leeds and Scholes opening the scoring at Old Trafford on his first post-comeback start. Ferdinand is delighted to see both back in action and believes his team-mate can help the Reds lift another league title.

“It’s brilliant to see two great players – two of the best players – come back,” Ferdinand said. “If I was going to name a top five list of players to have played in the Premier League, both Scholes and Henry would be in there.

“[Henry’s return] is great for Arsenal, of course, just as it’s great for us to have Scholes back. Hopefully he’s going to help us get over the line and win another couple of trophies.”

Ferdinand, like the rest of his United team-mates, had no idea Scholes was lining up a comeback. A fervent admirer of the 37-year-old, Rio says only a select few players in world football could manage to slot back into a top side so seamlessly.

“Only a handful of players on the planet could do it,” he said. “Iniesta, Xavi, Messi... they're the type of players who look as though they could just play football at the drop of a hat at the top level. The game is so natural to them.

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Premier League