Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand has suffered a fresh injury setback that will keep him out of this Sunday’s Carling Cup final as well as England’s friendly international against Egypt next week.
Ferdinand was unable to play any part in Manchester United’s 3-0 defeat of West Ham at Old Trafford on Tuesday and United boss Sir Alex Ferguson immediately ruled him out of Sunday’s showdown with Aston Villa.
“He got a twinge in his back this morning in training,” the United manager said. “He’d been training great with no mishaps at all. But when you get these twinges you can’t take a chance. He won’t be ready for Sunday. He’ll miss a couple of games.”
Ferguson said it should be only a short-term setback, although he and England coach Fabio Capello must be concerned about Ferdinand’s inability to put together a sustained run of games.
Ferdinand has played only 11 times this season and his longest run of successive games is three. There have been only two occasions when he has played back to back games and he has just returned to the side after a three-month lay-off.