Former United forward Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, during an interview stated that he hated playing against Rio Ferdinand the most during the latter’s time at Leeds United.
The reason for the same being that Solskjear hated a challenging player playing against him and Rio Ferdinand was one such player who was strong, agile, quick and clever. Solskjear stated this when he was asked which defender he hated playing against. He further stated that players like Marcel Desailly, Tony Adams and Paulo Maldini had similar attributes.
“There was Rio Ferdinand when he played for Leeds, too. I hated playing against strong, quick defenders. People like Marcel Desailly, Maldini, Cannavaro and Tony Adams never kicked you out of the game – they were the clever ones,” – Solskjaer
Ferdinand was later to be a teammate for Solskjear in Manchester United. Ferdinand joined Leeds United in 2000 at £18m where he was made the captain in his second season and then he moved on to Manchester United in 2002 at a world record price for a defender at £30m.