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West Ham sensation: I want to graduate from striker to defensive ace just like my hero

By Amir Mir

Reece Oxford has revealed he is hoping to emulate former West Ham defender Rio Ferdinand during his career.

Centre-back Oxford is highly regarded at the east London club and came through the club’s academy, just like Ferdinand did in the nineties.

Former England international Ferdinand went on to make a move to Leeds, before making a then British-record £30 million transfer to Manchester United.

Oxford who made his senior debut for the Hammers aged 16 in the 2-0 victory over Arsenal on the opening day of last season reveled the similarities between him and Ferdinand.

“The player that I looked up to the most at West Ham was probably Rio Ferdinand because he was the same position as me,” Oxford told Goal, as quoted by the Daily Mail.

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“When I came to the club I was a striker and he got moved to centre-back [too] and he just moved on from there, so hopefully I can push on the way he pushed on.”

Ferdinand went on to win six Premier League titles during his 451 appearances as a Manchester United player.

London-born Ferdinand made 131 appearances for the Hammers, with Oxford making 16 senior appearances in his early career so far.

The England under-20 international has made only two senior appearances this term, as he is yet to put pen-to-paper over a new deal at the east London club.

In other West Ham team news, Karren Brady has responded on Twitter to the Hammers controversy.