Manchester United stalwart Rio Ferdinand insists he is ready to defy the critics who claim he should no longer be regarded as a key component of David Moyes’ plans.
The former England international, who celebrated his 35th birthday earlier this week, has been rotated by his manager this season along with his long-term defensive partner at Old Trafford Nemanja Vidic.
The duo will face perhaps their stiffest examination of the season to date when table-topping Arsenal visit Old Trafford on Sunday with Ferdinand determined to prove his creaking body can still withstand the rigours of coping with the best the Premier League has to offer.
He told reporters: I think you go out there and play and put yourself in the shop window and the manager will decide if you play or not," said Ferdinand.
"Obviously you want to play in every minute of every game, but at this stage of my career I know that's not possible.
"I know the manager is going to put me in and out of the games, but I just want to be involved in as many as I can.
"At the beginning of last season, people were probably writing me off, saying I wasn't able to play in back-to-back games and play for Manchester United at this level. But I was part of a championship-winning team, which said it all.
"But last season has no bearing on people's opinions this season so you have to start again and prove yourself.
"To be fair, I've done that throughout my career - proving myself; not just to people outside but myself. That's the most important thing.”