As old school stories go, this is up there with the best as former Man Utd defender Rio Ferdinand has recalled a hilarious tale involving Roy Keane.
The 39-year-old enjoyed a trophy-laden stint at Old Trafford between 2002 and 2014, winning six Premier League titles and the Champions League among others.
However, evidently when he first joined the club from Leeds United, Keane was eager to make sure he settled in the right way and adapted to life at Man Utd.
Speaking about one of the first training sessions he had with the Red Devils, Ferdinand revealed he got an earful from Keane even when he thought he had done a decent job.
“I got the ball and passed to Gary [Neville], who was on my team,” Ferdinand said, as quoted by The Daily Star. “In a normal game that was a great ball; pass to your teammate, go up the pitch.
“And then Keane turned round and just started going: ‘Pass it forward, take risks, you’re not at Leeds or West Ham now, you’re at Manchester United!’
“I stood there and thought: ‘This guy is crazy. Man, what’s he doing? I passed it to a teammate, surely I’m doing alright.’ “I got home later that day and thought: ‘This guy is nuts, how am I going to deal with him on a daily basis?’”
Ferdinand went on reveal that it actually turned out to be a very important moment in his career at Old Trafford, as it was a reminder that he had to set an even higher standard to the one previous.
Having established a reputation for being a ball-playing centre-half who had the composure and quality on the ball to build attacks, evidently he just needed a strong word from Keane to get him going.
That’s arguably just a little insight into why Man Utd were as strong and as dominant as they were, they had players with big personalities teaching new faces the culture and way of life at the club. Whether or not that’s a factor now missing amid their ‘struggles’ to win the big trophies is up for debate.
Whatever the reason, Jose Mourinho and his men will be desperate to genuinely compete for the Premier League and Champions League moving forward.