Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand.

London - Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand will decide on his football future in the new year.

Ferdinand is expected to be offered a one-year extension to the United contract that runs out in the summer after overcoming back problems to play regularly for the last 18 months.

However, the 34-year-old has interest from the Middle East and America and is attractive to other clubs in the Barclays Premier League as well.

Ferdinand has not given any indication about whether he will stay at Old Trafford or continue his career at all, despite United manager Sir Alex Ferguson stating publicly that he hopes he will delay his retirement.

It is understood that the veteran defender wants to see how his body copes with the rigours of the winter programme before making a decision.