AS Roma are ready to make a serious move for Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand. Sportmediaset says Ferdinand's relationship with new Roma director general Franco Baldini, who remains England team manager, will be key to convincing the 32 year-old about moving to Italy.

Now 32, Roma hope to sign Ferdinand on a free transfer and see him as a major leader of their new locker room.

Indeed, Roma coach Luis Enrique would like to replace veteran Juan with Ferdinand, who would be called upon to help bring on young Dane Simon Kjaer in a new-look central defensive partnership.