By Daniel Feliciano

22nd Feb, 2022 | 8:15am

'Should be thanking me' - Rio Ferdinand tells Leeds fans he's the reason the club exists

Rio Ferdinand says Leeds United fans should be ‘thanking him’ as his transfer to Manchester United essentially saved the club, while speaking on his FIVE podcast.

Ferdinand played for Leeds between 2000-2002 before joining their Rose derby rivals in a £30m transfer, a world record for a defender at the time.

After admitting that he still receives a hostile reception from the “unbelievable” Elland Road crowd, the former England captain made a wild claim about how his deal saved the club from perishing.

“I put on social media about the atmosphere at Elland Road. When I was there as a player for Leeds it was unbelievable,” he said. “When I was there as a Man United player, mate, seriously, it was hostile, to say the least.

“I actually didn’t realise how much of a rivalry Leeds and Man United was. In London it wasn’t a thing for us, I never knew that it was a big rivalry.

“Then I signed for Man United and I went there for the right reasons, to win trophies, simple as that, and I was justified in doing and Leeds needed the money so really they should be thanking me for leaving otherwise the club go over.”

Wild

Leeds’ financial situation was absolutely a sight for sore eyes back in that period of time and the £30million that they got from his deal certainly would have helped.

But to say it’s the reason that the club didn’t ‘go over’ is a crazy thing to say considering all the things that happened during that time.

Ferdinand is still loved at Old Trafford, which means he’s definitely still disliked in Yorkshire and it’s just one of those things that will always be the case.

He praised the atmosphere at the ground as ‘unbelievable’ which is nice and he always speaks well of his time at the club, and his time at the club was highly successful by the standards of today.

It only lacked a trophy, and then he went and won them all with the team Leeds fans hate the most. These comments will only see Whites fans ramp up the heat whenever they see him next.

In other Leeds news, ‘Myth’ – Dermot Gallagher hits back after incidents in Leeds loss v Man United