QPR defender Ferdinand didn’t want Sunderland exit

Wes Brown
Wes Brown
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ANTON Ferdinand insists he never wanted to leave Sunderland, but had little choice over his deadline day move to QPR.

Ferdinand was one of Sunderland’s most consistent performers over the opening four games of the season after quickly forming an effective central defensive partnership alongside Wes Brown.

But with the 26-year-old in the final 12 months of his contract at the Stadium of Light and unlikely to receive a new deal, Sunderland opted to cash in on the defender.

Newly-promoted QPR offered £3million to land Ferdinand and Steve Bruce were happy to accept the bid, knowing his defensive options would be strengthened by the return of Titus Bramble and Michael Turner.

Ferdinand said: “I was enjoying my football, I loved every minute I played at Sunderland.

“It wasn’t a case of me wanting to leave, I didn’t want to leave the club at this time.

“I was playing okay and playing with new players such as Wes Brown and I was enjoying myself.

“But when a club tells you they want you to talk to another club, that kind of makes your mind up for you a little bit, telling you that you’re not really in their plans.”

QPR and Sunderland were the most active top flight clubs in the transfer window, with both making 11 summer signings.

Ferdinand follows in the footsteps of former QPR favourite and cousin Les Ferdinand, and is excited about the new era at Loftus Road under the stewardship of Neil Warnock.

“He (Warnock) spoke to me about me as a player, he wants me to enjoy my football and to do the best I can,” added Ferdinand.

“He can see potential in me and sees himself as the manager that can get that potential out of me. It was nice to hear.

“I’m back in London playing at a club where it’s exciting times. I was saying to my dad it’s like we’re on a roundabout and we’ve come full circle.

“My brother was there when he was young, we used to go there and watch Rio train, and then we used to get tickets and watch Les Ferdinand on Saturday.

“One of my friends who I grew up with said it was mad that we used to wear the QPR shirt and now I’m playing for them.”