Rio, Manchester United and pivotal moments…

It’s fantastic to read that the ex-England defender Rio Ferdinand has found love again.

As a widower I know the emotional trauma that this man has had to endure, and I wish him and Kate Wright the TOWIE star all the best for the future.

Losing Elena has been traumatic for me on many levels, as I lost my wife, my best friend, the business of sport we were both involved in, and of course, the biggest loss, my soul mate.

Some treasured memories of the loving times I spent with Elena

 

We were together 24/7 on the WTA World Tour, and shared some fantastic experiences 

Reading this story took me back to when Rio and my life paths crossed. It was one of those pivotal events that affected my whole life.

I invented a training system called Footsport Dynamics and presented it at a professional sports conference at the NEC in Birmingham.

Some of the Manchester United Football Club representatives attended and watched my demonstration and on my drive back home, I got a call from my office saying that they had bought the system.

Within a week I was on my way to the world renowned Manchester United Training ground, Carrington. I met the Manchester United coaching staff led by a great man called Joe Filo who made this experience outstanding.

Nino and Man Utd coaches

Great memories of the time I spent with Jo Filho and the Manchester United FC Coaching Team

I set my equipment out and waited for the under-18 squad to appear, there was a door that I was told they were going to come through and I was expecting a group of young players with big dreams. What happened next was a moment I will never forget.

There was a big bang, the door was flung open and a young first team player called Wayne Rooney came bounding energetically into the training area. He was followed by Ole Gunnar Solskjær, Ruud van Nistelrooy, Ryan Giggs and Rio Ferdinand.

Rooney was very friendly and started some banter, I had an inspirational conversation with Ole, before seeing Rio and the rest of the first team members all moving outside for their training session.

I then did what I was there to do and delivered the session for the under 18 players.

We all experience life changing moments and for me, this one validated how much I loved working with elite athletes, and motivated me even further to keep developing my craft and seeing where the path of coaching would take my life.

 

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