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Rio Ferdinand opens up on massive fear over losing to Chelsea in 2008 Champions League final

Rio Ferdinand has opened up over the massive fear he felt over losing to Chelsea in the Champions League final in 2008.

As it turned out, Manchester United emerged victorious on the night, landing their second European title under Sir Alex Ferguson.

Cristiano Ronaldo opened the scoring in the first half only for Frank Lampard to equalise.

The match went to penalties, with John Terry infamously slipping.

Though it was Edwin van der Sar who was the hero, saving Nicolas Anelka’s spot-kick to send the trophy to Old Trafford.

And Ferdinand has admitted the added pressure of playing their Premier League rivals terrified him.

United beat Chelsea on penalties in Moscow
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He said: “That added pressure to me definitely because I was playing against friends, international friends, friends I’d grown up with.

“It made it a much higher pressurised situation because so much more was at stake if it could have been.

“It was tough, it was really tough because at the end of the day again there was so many bragging rights to be had between us.

“And listen, if we beat someone from Italy, Spain or Germany, you don’t see them really until you play them in a year or two down the line.

John Terry slipped in the penalty shootout

“Whereas if you lose to Chelsea in Moscow that’s folklore, that’s history, that’s there every time you go to their stadium, twice a year if not more, and from the fans that you see.”

Ferdinand was living in London at the time and understood that there was an extra pressure added as a result.

He said: “I was coming back to live in London after that so they would have been on me all the time.

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“That pressure mounts up so it becomes a crazy, crazy beast before the first whistle has even blown.”

Chelsea and United are currently vying for fourth place in the Premier League.

That was prior to the coronavirus crisis decimating the sporting…

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