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Rio Ferdinand Expertly Breaks Down Why 'Devastating' Fernando Torres Tormented Nemanja Vidic In Heated Battles

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Rio Ferdinand Expertly Breaks Down Why 'Devastating' Fernando Torres Tormented Nemanja Vidic In Heated Battles

Rio Ferdinand believes that Fernando Torres deployed a style of play that was built to “hurt” former Manchester United teammate Nemanja Vidic.

Vidic and Ferdinand forged a monster partnership at United and both former defenders enjoyed incredible success under the legendary Sir Alex Ferguson.

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However, Vidic was repeatedly on the receiving end of a hard time from Liverpool hero Torres, who was in lethal goalscoring form during his Anfield days.

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The 40-year-old Serbian was sent off three times when he came up against Torres and Liverpool, with the former Reds striker tormenting him on the pitch.

Ferdinand revealed that he and Vidic never discussed the idea of swapping who marked Torres, despite claiming that he “didn’t cause me any problems.”

However, the United legend claimed that a “devastating striker” like El Nino was that one player who might have proved too much for Vidic’s style of play.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA
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When asked about Vidic’s battles with Torres, Ferdinand told The Beautiful Game Podcast: “First of all, it’s the best partnership ever in Premier League history.

“Trust me. Listen, strikers were playing out on the wings sometimes because they didn’t want to come up against us, it was mad!

“There’s always going to be that one player in your career who’s difficult. He might not be the best player on the planet, but his style is made to hurt your style. And Torres might have just been that for Nemanja.

“He’s someone he found difficult to play against. And he’s probably the only player I’ve seen consistently give Vida a hard time, and he got sent off in a couple of the games didn’t he, early on in the games.

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“But listen, Torres was a great player and when he was in his pomp when he was at Liverpool, he was one of the best strikers about. He was a devastating striker. But with me one-v-one, he didn’t cause me any problems if I’m honest.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

“That’s just the way it is. One of my hardest strikers to play against when people ask me -- other than the ones that are obvious, like [Cristiano] Ronaldo and [Lionel] Messi -- was Kevin Davies. You would never expect that.

“But he was always tough to play against for me, always caused me the most problems. He always was physical, just obstructing you all the time. The ball might be over there [away from you] but he’s grabbing you and all this stuff.

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“So you would never expect that, but Torres would have been that for Nemanja probably. But we never really spoke about it.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

“It’s mad, our relationship, we spent a lot of time with each other after training, in and around the training ground just chatting about loads of stuff, but it wasn’t about our relationship on the pitch.

“It wasn’t like, ‘Vida you know when you go tight with [Luis] Suarez, I’m going to be behind covering.’ It was nothing like that. We never spoke like that at all.

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“But our relationship was like there was something in the air that I knew he was going to go there, and if he went there, I would go here. If I went here, he was there.

“Partnerships in the game are not necessarily built just on the training pitch, sometimes you’re just blessed that someone comes into your life at that time and it’s come together just like that. And that’s what we had.”

Vidic, who ended his remarkable playing career in 2016, called former rival Torres a “top player” and explained why he believes El Nino had his number on the pitch.

Featured Image Credit: PA/Rio Ferdinand Presents FIVE

Topics: Nemanja Vidic, Fernando Torres, Rio Ferdinand, Manchester United, Liverpool, Premier League, England, Football

Adnan Riaz
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