Ferdinand: Man Utd players serious about Far East tour

Rio Ferdinand says Manchester United's Far East tour will be taken seriously by the players.

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Although the temperatures in Tokyo are not quite at the sweltering levels of two years ago, the humidity is bound to take its toll when United open their trip against Urawa Red Diamonds in Saitama on Tuesday.

But Ferdinand knows the pain will eventually prove worthwhile as Sir Alex Ferguson's men take the first steps towards retaining the title they won so clinically last term.

"The weather sometimes makes it difficult on these trips but it will stand us in good stead for when we come back and start the season," said the England defender.

"It is the pre-season programme that carries you through the whole campaign, especially the demanding periods like Christmas.

"Fingers crossed we get it right. We have every confidence in the staff at the club. They have never got it wrong before so I am sure they won't this year."

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