Ferguson revealed how he reassured Ferdinand when the defender was stripped of the England armband.
“When the captaincy was taken away from him I told him you have to put it out of your mind,” said Ferguson. “I said, ‘Don’t forget, it’s the same with us.
"I can’t have you as captain now because you may not be playing every week’. I told him, ‘You are not the same player as five years ago and need to adjust your game. Step back a yard’. That’s what you do with an ageing player. He is doing as well as ever now.”