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Sir Alex Ferguson has confirmed Rio Ferdinand, Michael Carrick and Wes Brown have agreed new contracts with Manchester United.

Chief executive David Gill told Ferguson the good news in an early-morning meeting without outlining precisely how long the three players will remain, though Ferdinand's deal is thought to run until 2012, while Brown and Carrick are likely to pen five-year contracts.

"They have agreed new deals," said Ferguson.

"It continues our policy of lengthening contracts at the right time and keeps the continuity of the first-team squad going, which we try to do."

Ferdinand hinted earlier this week that a deal could be close and those words have been proved to be correct.

It means there will be no prolonged negotiation over a new contract, avoiding the situation which arose following his failure to put pen to paper on his current deal for a number of months that eventually saw him criticised by Manchester United fans in 2005.

While Ferdinand and Brown have been long-standing members of Ferguson's squad for a number of years, Carrick is coming to the end of only his second full campaign following an £18million move from Tottenham.

Yet an improved new deal just emphasises his importance to United as he prepares to play in his second Champions League semi-final and collect another Premier League title.

Carrick said: "Things have been falling into place for me here and it is nice to know the club reward you for that."

Speaking earlier in the week, team-mate Ferdinand said: "I'm enjoying my time at United, I love being here and that's not changed.

"Being part of a successful team is great and to be part of the tradition that goes along with that is an honour in itself.

"To have the opportunity to stay here for another four or five years would be fantastic and it will be a proud day for me, definitely, when I do sign a new contract."

It is no surprise to Ferguson that Brown is staying put as well, even though the United manager felt compelled to attack the defender's agent earlier this season as it appeared the 28-year-old was prepared to move for nothing at the season's end.

"People were speculating about Wes because of his contract but I don't think there was any club for him other than Manchester United," said Ferguson.

"I always felt he was a Manchester United player, so I was always quietly confident."

Carrick too has fitted in well since his £18million arrival from Tottenham at the start of last season.

Although Ferguson was condemned for paying an inflated fee, the Red Devils chief felt the Wallsend-born star could bring a touch of style to the United midfield.

"Michael Carrick has been a terrific buy for us and he has certainly had a wonderful season," said the United manager.

"When he came at first he didn't get straight into the team, which is an experience a lot of new arrivals have.

"But it really helped him playing alongside Paul Scholes and of course, his maturity came along when Paul was missing earlier in the season.

"The challenge of coming to Manchester United has really helped him. He is playing with a squad of really good players, which helps and I think you are seeing someone come to the top of his game.''

from sportinglife.com
 

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great news. i still think carrick is worth the 18 mil. you dont get many good passers in the defensive midfield postions. notably pirlo.
 
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