Rio: Kagawa is 'quick, sharp, has great awareness and plays off both feet'

The 33-year-old admits he's been hugely impressed so far by the Japan international, who was also eulogised by Sir Alex Ferguson for his attitude in training
Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand has revealed he has been impressed by what he's seen from Shinji Kagawa so far.

The Japan international showed glimpses of class in the 1-1 draw with South African side Ajax Cape Town on Saturday and has already enchanted the powerful centre-back, who said he was "excited" about the prospect of playing with him this season.

“I've been very, very impressed," Ferdinand told the team's official website.

"He's quick, he's sharp, he has great awareness, he plays off both feet.

“I'm excited about playing with him and getting the season started. I think he'll be a great acquisition.”

The former Cerezo Osaka and Borussia Dortmund man also earned praise from Sir Alex Ferguson for his rapid integration and impeccable attitude in training, despite not being comfortable with English yet.

“The thing that's impressed me is that every exercise we do on the training ground, he's never needed it to be explained,” Ferguson said.

“After one demonstration he joins in, as if he's known the language forever. We know he doesn't speak the language, but it isn't a problem.

“It just goes to show that a good footballer can pick up exactly what's needed. He's been fantastic in that respect.”

United will continue their preparation for the new campaign with a friendly against Chinese big spenders Shanghai Shenhua on Wednesday.

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