Rio Ferdinand Hails David Beckham's 'Deserved' England Success

The experienced England defender appeared focused and calm when discussing a range of topics in his England press conference earlier...

Rio Ferdiand gave an impression of extreme professionalism in his press conference this afternoon, ahead of England's friendly with Spain in Seville on Wednesday night.

Speaking to reporters in front of the Sky Sports News cameras, the Manchester United man was calm and focused as he fielded questions ranging from the topic of potential racism at the game, to David Beckham's marvellous achievement in returning to play a significant role in the national squad once more.

The fixture itself, although a friendly, was clearly being taken seriously by Ferdinand, who maintained its importance to England continuing their current good run that has seen them surge to the top of their qualifying group.

"It's definitely important," he said. "We need to keep the run going, performance and results wise.

"It's a massive test, we all know what qualities they've got. They've got some of the best players in Europe and the world."

As for the new recruits to the England squad, Ferdinand was very positive, saying that their call-ups were "fully deserved", highlighting West Ham United striker Carlton Cole in particular as a positive addition to the national set-up.

"Carlton Cole's scoring goals for West Ham and he's in a rich vein of form. Good luck to him," he added.

With the first anniversary of Fabio Capello's time in charge of the England team occurring about now, Ferdinand was quizzed abut his feelings on the coach, and whether he felt the Italian was 'the best' coach that the defender had experienced with England.

"It's too early to talk about who's the best and who's the worst. He's doing a good job at the moment and long may it continue," Ferdinand added, before explaining that he felt that results in tournaments were the criteria by which history would judge the Italian.

The Manchester United defender preferred not to discuss the issue of potential racism in Seville, after black English players had been the subject of racist abuse the last time the two nations met in Madrid, saying, "We're just going there fully concentrating on playing football. Anything else can be dealt with after the game."

As for the choice of venue being influenced by potential racism, Ferdinand 'dead-batted' the issue, claiming, "We play where we are told to play."

But it was on the subject of the returning Beckham that Ferdinand was at his most effusive, hailing the former skipper's return as a fabulous achievement, particularly as he looks set to equal  Booby Moore's 108 England caps, a record for an outfield player.

"He's had a lot of challenges throughout his career," Ferdinand added. "Becks is a fantastic footballer. There is a zest about him. His quality is undoubted.

"Just to get to 100 [caps] is an achievement, but to equal a man of the stature of Bobby Moore is unbelievable.

"Long may it continue. Becks fully deserves it."

Zack Wilson,