Much has been made of the Reds' stuttering start to the 2022-23 season, with fans and pundits speculating that the team's age is an issue. Their midfield, in particular, has looked leggy with James Milner, Jordan Henderson and Thiago Alcantara all on the wrong side of 30.
Other key players, including Mohamed Salah, Virgil van Dijk, Joel Matip and Roberto Firmino, are over 30 years of age as well. Barring Firmino and Milner, all the other players have contracts running beyond next summer.
Ferdinand subsequently believes Liverpool need to know when to axe players who are past their prime despite their achievements at the club.
He referenced legendary Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson's actions to elaborate on his point, saying (as quoted by the Daily Mail):
"He [Ferguson] was great at seeing the chink in them players armours whatever it be and changing and getting them out before they were on the other side of the mountain and going downhill.
"Whereas you look at we're talking about certain players in this Liverpool team who are probably on the other side of the mountain now in terms of where they are in their careers."
The former Manchester United centre-back continued:
"Jaap Stam was the best defender in the world at the time - 'See you later.' David Beckham, in the form of his career - 'Bye bye!' Ruud van Nistelrooy, top goalscorer at United, but the man just saw something early and it's about making them big calls, the risk involved with that.
"You have to have the confidence in what you're doing and you have to have the ability to spot talent elsewhere to bring in and cover that."
Liverpool beat Napoli but fail to clinch top spot in UEFA Champions League group
In a tight game, the Reds ultimately emerged victorious thanks to a couple of late goals. Mohamed Salah tapped home the rebound from Darwin Nunez's saved header to put the hosts ahead in the 84th minute.
Nunez then did the same after Virgil van Dijk's effort was saved deep into stoppage time.
The 2-0 win saw Jurgen Klopp's team end their group-stage campaign with five wins from six matches. However, that was only good for second place as Napoli, who also won five games, clinched top spot thanks to their 4-1 thrashing of Liverpool in Naples.
The Reds will now have to face the winner of one of the other groups in what is likely to be a difficult last-16 fixture in the Champions League.