Young West Ham defender names ex-Hammers and England star on whom he modelled his game

Leo Chambers reveals that he tries to play like former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand.

West Ham United's Leo Chambers has revealed to the BBC that he has tried to model his game on former Hammers and England defender Rio Ferdinand.

The 20-year-old, who is currently on loan at Colchester United, has made three senior appearances for the Irons with all of them coming in the League Cup two seasons ago.

The former England under-19 international has seen his progress falter slightly since then, and he made his first senior appearance in two-and-a-half years for United last week after joining the club on a month-long deal.

Chambers is striving for success with the Irons, and admits that he is aiming to follow in the footsteps of another former academy defender who went on to achieve great things.

He told BBC Essex: "The only centre-half I've modelled my game on is Rio Ferdinand - he's come from 20 minutes down the road from me in south London.

"He's come through West Ham's academy and we have sort of similar playing styles. I've watched his game closely and one of the things he does is bring the ball out and is comfortable.

"If I could be half the player he was, I'll be alright."

Ferdinand played 157 times for the Hammers between his senior debut in 1996 and 2000, profiting from a similar loan spell at a lower-league club, in his case at then-League One Bournemouth.

Such was the youngster's impressive development that he was signed by Leeds United for £18 million just two weeks after turning 22, and he moved on to Manchester United in a £29 million deal just two years later.

Ferdinand went on to play 710 times at club level in his career, as well as winning 81 caps for England.

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