Following the 3-2 defeat at the hands of West Ham United on Tuesday night, it looks very likely that United will be missing out on a top four finish this season.
Manager Louis van Gaal is hoping to offset the disappointment in the Premier League with a victory in the FA Cup against Crystal Palace later this month but United legend Ferdinand has stated that success in the Cup cannot mask the failure to qualify for the Champions League.
The former England international told the Daily Telegraph:"If they don't qualify for the Champions League, it's not a successful season. That's quite fair to say.
"If they get their hands on the FA Cup, that's a great achievement but, in my time, if you'd won a trophy you'd done well but you've got to get into the Champions League as well. And I think that's the case even more so today.
"[Reaching] the Champions League maybe outweighs winning sometimes, even the FA Cup, in terms of the commercial options of a football club. Finishing in the Champions League places is the only place Manchester United should be finishing. That's got to be the minimum demand at that football club. That's what it was when I was there."