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Ferdinand: I can be England manager

ESPN staff
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Rio Ferdinand says a radical shake-up is needed in English football © Getty Images
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Rio Ferdinand has revealed he dreams of becoming England manager and has claimed that radical changes are necessary within the national set-up.

The former Manchester United defender, who won 81 caps for his country, also believes England should follow the example set by the likes of World Cup winners Germany in appointing a younger coach.

"Everyone has dreams of playing for England and my dream after football is to manage England," Ferdinand, 35, told the Daily Mail.

Rio Ferdinand is taking his coaching badges © Getty Images
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"[Joachim] Loew, [Juergen] Klinsmann were young geezers when they started out with Germany. Look at [Marco] Van Basten, [Jose] Mourinho, [Pep] Guardiola and Luis Enrique - they are not old fellas but they were given a chance.

"It is different in this country. We are 10 years behind in certain situations. We have to do what's best for English football."

Since signing for Queens Park Rangers during the summer, Ferdinand has been training for his UEFA B coaching license, meaning that he would only need the A License and Pro License to be considered for a managerial position.

Ferdinand admitted that although he was not in a position to coach now, he would be surprised if, when fully qualified, he was overlooked for a managerial role.

"I will give myself the best opportunity of getting the job by getting all the badges," added Ferdinand. "I don't expect the chance now, but once I get the badges I am there. If I don't get a job in management I will wonder why.

"I don't think people should start shouting the odds about the opportunity to manage clubs until they have their badges. I am not sitting here saying 'give me a job' because I don't have them yet."

Despite sitting on Greg Dyke's FA Commission, designed to assess the state of English football and offer solutions going forward, Ferdinand conceded that he may not fit the mould of a typical choice for the national job.

Ferdinand cited his eight-month ban from football for missing a drugs test in 2003, but believes he deserves a second chance, also pointing to the example of Glenn Hoddle, whom he regards as the best England manager he worked under.

"Everybody deserves a second chance," said Ferdinand. "Maybe I'm not their [FA] type, but I don't know what their type is.

"Glenn Hoddle is a prime example. He's the best one you had and he is gone, never to be seen again with England. We are on our knees."

Ferdinand also believes a shake-up is needed to turn around the fortunes of the England team, questioning the mentality of young players in the Premier League and suggesting their incentive to succeed at the highest level has gone.

"It will take radical changes for things to happen with England and people's noses might be put out of joint but in the long run it will work," Ferdinand added.

"Are you going to do that extra set of doggies, or sprints? You can be in the reserves and if you have £5,000 a week coming in you're thinking about what colour car you're going to get.

"That is the way it is. Maybe clubs or the FA have to revert back a little bit to give them a bit more of a grounding."

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