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Those comments came at a time when United were struggling in the Premier League and had just been eliminated from the Champions League.
Pogba has worked his way back into the fold, but Ferdinand is unfazed if he moves on in the summer and would love to see the Red Devils make England international Grealish their marquee signing.
“I don’t care if Pogba goes or not, Grealish is my man,” Ferdinand said on Rio Ferdinand Presents FIVE. “I have known him since he was in his early teens. He came to my restaurant and I got him and his dad some tickets for a game.”
Grealish has been involved in some off-field controversies, but Ferdinand feels the attacking midfielder has been working hard on and off the pitch and his performances prove the point.
“He’s a great kid with a great family,” Ferdinand said. “He loves his football. What the young kids don’t see with Jack Grealish is the hunger and hard work behind closed doors - the attention to detail and the way he trains. He has changed his regime and looked at himself and asked what he can do better.
“I have heard from a lot of people that he is diligent in all the work he does off the pitch to get to where he is now. You are seeing results week in and week out.
“He is one of those players that has looked at himself in the summer and thought, 'Yes, I’ve done well last season, I’ve signed a new deal at my boyhood club, and I am going to go again'.
“If I am a manager of a top team in England, a top three or four team, then I would not allow him to stay there, I would go and take him.”
Ferdinand feels Grealish’s style of play is frightening for defenders and compares favourably to the likes of Ronaldinho and Lionel Messi.
“As a defender, as much as pace behind you frightens you, it is also the player who can find pockets of space, turn and run at you,” he said.
“Pablo Aimar who played at Valencia and Argentina, Ariel Ortega, players like that who could run with it and dribble - Ronaldinho and Lionel Messi. I am not saying he is in that class yet, but that style of player who runs at you. He is a fantastic player.