No England retirement for Rio
United defender also reveals he would have liked Olympic chance
Last Updated: July 25, 2012 9:56am
Rio Ferdinand: No plans to retire from international football despite being overlooked
Rio Ferdinand has confirmed he will not formally retire from international football despite being overlooked by England at Euro 2012.
Roy Hodgson controversially selected John Terry instead, despite the Chelsea defender facing a racial abuse charge against Ferdinand's brother Anton - from which he was subsequently acquitted.
While the 33-year-old Manchester United centre-back acknowledges he is unlikely to figure for England again, he will not be making himself unavailable.
"I said that if I was not playing in the summer, I did not see myself playing in the future," he told The Sun.
"I said that if I was not playing in the summer, I did not see myself playing in the future. But I would never retire from international football."
Rio Ferdinand Quotes of the week
"But I would never retire from international football. I will always be available but my main focus is playing for Manchester United.
"I won't be miffed if I'm not in the England squad because I don't see myself being part of it anymore.
"It's gone, this is a new season, that has happened.
"The Euros is finished, England played the way they did and the tournament has finished."
Ferdinand also admits he would have relished the opportunity to represent Team GB as an over-age player in the Olympics.
Stuart Pearce included Ferdinand on the initial long-list of players but eventually opted for Micah Richards, Ryan Giggs and Craig Bellamy as his over-age choices.
Asked if he would like to have been included, Ferdinand replied: "Yeah, of course I would. Definitely, 100 per cent.
"It's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and I said that to Tom Cleverley when he was named in the squad.
"Anyone would love to be involved and you would be stupid to say no to the chance."
Although Ferdinand is disappointed to have missed out on international honours this summer, he feels it could prove to be a positive for his career - and Manchester United.
"In past summers I always played with England so this is new for me," he added.
"Hopefully I am refreshed and have no injuries or wear and tear. In terms of my United career it could turn out to be a blessing in disguise."