London, July 25 : Manchester United coach Alex Ferguson has hailed Rio Ferdinand as the best defender in Europe.
According to Fergie, Ferdinand has improved his game dramatically since moving to Old Trafford from Leeds for 30-million pounds in 2002.
He told the Sun: "Rio has been the best defender in the country, if not Europe for a couple of years. His maturity and leadership have been key factors in the team's success. He is someone that young players learn from and that more experienced players respect.
"I have not seen a better defensive pairing than him and Nemanja for a long time," he added.