Ferdinand declared: "Being the England captain can never be a hassle. It's an honour and a privilege. It's not the be-all and end-all for me. If I'm not the captain, I won't shrivel up and go into a shell.
"If something needs to be said in the dressing room, I'll say it. I'll still play with 100 per cent commitment. But I'd be lying if I said I would not like the captaincy on a regular basis.
"Of course I want it. Any player would." Ferdinand, 29, has no doubts he is a much more mature character these days.
He added: "I feel I'm at a good period in my life, where I understand the responsibilities of being a footballer.
"When I was a kid playing on my estate in Peckham, I wasn't looking to become a role model or a superstar who is always in the papers and on the TV.
"But that's what being a professional footballer involves these days and you have to deal with it, whether you're the England captain or not."