'The fascinating story of one of football's most controversial stars' - Daily MailRio Ferdinand established himself as one of the world's top; defenders. He burst on to the pitch at the young age of seventeen, when he made his first-team debut for West Ham, playing alongside other budding talents Frank Lampard and Joe Cole. During his time with the Hammers, the young Ferdinand was honoured to be compared to 1966 World Cup hero Sir Booby Moore, and it wasn't long before he himself was picked to represent England.His performances on the world stage transformed Ferdinand from an emerging force to a fully accomplished international football star. As his reputation soared, so too did his value on the transfer market, and in the summer of 2002 Manchester United signed him for a world-record fee for a defensive player.The path to footballing glory hasn't always been smooth: when he was a young boy his schoolmate Stephen Lawrence was murdered, while in later years his reputation was dented by drink-driving shame and an outrageous holiday in Cyprus. And in 2004 his career faced the ultimate test - having missed a routine drugs test, Ferdinand was banned from professional football for eight months.Yet he came back stronger than ever, becoming a defensive lynchpin at both club and international level. A crucial member of the team, Rio as a player was both controlled and calm in even the most heated of games, while his pace, organisational skills and reading of the game made him one of the strongest team players.This searching biography, described by the Sunday Times on its publication as 'the most exciting sports biography of the year', has been fully revised and updated to take account of Ferdinand's life and career since he retired from professional football. It paints a portrait, not always uncritical, of an extraordinary footballer, but also an extraordinary man who shook up the world of sport and, in his work for charity and as an informed commentator, continues to do so. In doing so, it covers the highs and lows of an illustrious career, revealing all about Ferdinand's extraordinary talent, dedication and ambition.