Ferdinand considers China move as United defender's contract nears end
08:36 GMT, 19 November 2012
Rio Ferdinand's 10-year career at Manchester United could end this summer when his contract expires after revealing to friends there is a 'big chance' he will be leaving.
The defender is weighing up his future, but has told friends he has no intention of retiring – with a move abroad the most likely option for the 34-year-old.
One option open to Ferdinand is to play in China where he could secure a deal which would improve on the 130,000-a-week he receives at Old Trafford, according to reports in the Guardian.
On the move Ferdinand's 10-year spell at Old Trafford could be ending
Sir Alex Ferguson is hopeful he will stay and intimated he believes Rio has plenty of football left in his before he retires.
'I think Rio can play for two or three more years,' the manager said. 'He is not as quick as he was but that is not a big issue for me. His experience is important and there is no reason he can't stay on. I didn’t even realise his contract was up.'
But Ferdinand has since told Inside United: 'The best thing I can do is to look at it at Christmas, and then again in the summer, to see how I'm feeling and go from there.
'But hearing the manager say things like that definitely puts the spring back in your step.
'I'll have a better idea of that in December or January time, when the games start coming thick and fast. That is when it really hits you and you know the hard work really has to start.
Still got t: Sir Alex says Ferdinand can compete at the top level
'I’ll probably get a better gauge of where I’m at fitness-wise and the benefit of having the summer off then.'
Ferdinand managed 38 appearances in all competitions last term and has been a regular again this season, despite the back condition which has hampered him in recent seasons.
Nicolas Anelka left Chelsea for Shanghai Shenhua in January for around 175,000-a-week, and Didier Drogba joined him in the summer on a two-and-a-half year deal worth a reported 195,000-a-week.
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