he forgets to take a drug test one at a time, just like you and me. But seriously, the “Punk’d” host / Manchester United centre back tells the Observer’s Jamie Jackson he had a rather mundane method of coping with last weekend’s loss at Arsenal.

‘We’d got beat. And when you lose – we lost in training today and I’m depressed – but when you lose against Arsenal it’s not the best feeling, it does your head in. I was going back to meet my family in a hotel for my birthday. It was meant to be a really happy time. So I thought before I go back maybe I’ll go and have a couple of drinks in a pub. So I told the driver to stop off at some London pub. And he was like, “No, I can’t let you can’t go in there.” I had my Man United tracksuit on in a West Ham area. I said, “Nah, just drop me off, leave me. Stop the car.” So he did, and I went in. And to be honest everyone was looking. I could see people going, “What’s he doing in here?”

‘I ended up having a couple of drinks, three packets of crisps and sat in the corner watching the football results coming in on the TV. Then I got up and went home. Players do do normal things. People think we don’t, but we do.’

Keep in mind that former Mets reliever Heath Bell felt compelled to don a disguise before taking the 7 train back to Manhattan. Even in the greater NYC area —- and perhaps even in Bell’s own home — Ferdinand is a slightly more recognized public figure.