Vidic - Rio will bounce back

Red Devils defender backs team-mate to return to top form

By Richard Bailey.   Last Updated: 18/11/09 10:42am

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Vidic: Ferdinand backing

Vidic: Ferdinand backing

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Nemanja Vidic is convinced centre-back partner Rio Ferdinand will return to top form once he regains full fitness.

The pair have formed a formidable partnership at the heart of the Red Devils defence since Vidic's arrival in January 2006, contributing to three Premier League titles and a UEFA Champions League crown in that time.

However both have struggled for form this term with Ferdinand especially making a number of stand-out, high profile mistakes for club and country.

The England international has not been helped by injury over the past few months, with the 31-year-old currently out of action with a calf problem but Vidic believes Ferdinand will soon be back to his best.

"I don't think it is a question I need to put to myself," he told the Daily Mirror.

"Over the years, he has shown how good he is. When he doesn't have injuries, he is a top-class player.

"Rio and myself have had a few injuries from the start of the season and when you have injuries it's difficult to get back your form and be on top of your game. In my case, I hope that's in the past."

Vidic insists he has now fully recovered from his own calf injury and is expected to follow his 45 minute cameo against Northern Ireland at the weekend with an hour run out against South Korea at Craven Cottage on Wednesday.

Wide open

The Serbian international was only named on the bench for the top of the table clash with Chelsea last time out, as a result of the calf problem, but insists the title race is still wide open despite the Blues opening up a five point gap at the summit.

"Every team, maybe not so much Chelsea but especially ourselves and Liverpool, are losing so many more points compared to the years before, and not just off good teams," he added.

"At the moment any team can win. I think this year the league winners will get maximum 85 points, maybe less."

The former Spartak Moscow man even classes local rivals Manchester City as title challengers despite a run of five consecutive draws.

"They have good players, but we will see how good their team is," he stated.

"I don't want to say they don't have a chance. When you look at the players they have, you need to respect their team.

"And they are definitely going to take points off the top teams."

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