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Fergie Set To Commit The Mistake Of 1999 Again

Fergie Set To Commit The Mistake Of 1999 Again

Fergie is less and less optimistic over the proposed signing of Dimitar Berbatov... incredible, we can't even tie up a transfer this summer.

Relations between Spurs and Manchester United are quite frosty but that's no reason: Liverpool managed to snap up Robbie Keane a mere days after they were reported to the FA over their behaviour. So why is Fergie concerned?

'I'm feeling less optimistic right now,' said Ferguson.

'We are looking at something, but if it doesn't come off then we will carry on as we are.'

Well, what we have is pretty good, I agree. After all, we have won the Premier League and the Champions League as well so we can't be that bad. Still, it is far from a faultless, perfect squad.

The case was same in 1999. We've just won the Treble and Fergie, immersed in glory, felt that the squad is strong enough. That squad also had its faults, most particularly in two areas: the defence was not good enough and while the first-choice midfield was brilliant, their alternatives were not up to the job.

Irwin was aging, neither of our centre backs were anywhere near Jaap Stam's quality and in midfield only Nicky Butt could provide adequate replacement. Yet Fergie did not plunge into the transfer market.

The Premier League wasn't as strong then as it's now and the overwhelming brilliance of our famous midfield four, combined with four lethal strikers, was enough for easy Premiership titles in 2000 and 2001. Yet the team never reached the heights of 99' (or even '97) in Europe because the squad wasn't strengthened after its greatest success.

The current squad needs nothing else but a good, solid, reliable centre forward who is a good finisher. Dimitar Berbatov fits the bill and though his price is astronomical, we can afford him. Not buying him or anyone will comdemn the current crop of players to the same fate which their predecessors encountered: the failure in Europe.

Ronaldo is the only player in the current squad who can be relied upon consistently hitting the back of the net. Tevez and Rooney are brilliant attackers but their finishing is erratic, unlike Ronaldo's. We need someone who puts away the majority of his chances and while Berbatov is not a Van Nistelrooy, he's a more reliable goalscorer than either Rooney or Tevez.

If we do not sign anyone, if we stagnate, I won't protest. I will enjoy our games and expect a lot of good football. But great, sustained success? No, that's unlikely if we do not try to stay ahead of our pursuers.

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Date:Saturday August 23 2008
Time: 2:21PM


ramos has dropped berbs from the squad. i think your red nosed t w a t of a manager will get his way again. fancy throwing hargreaves our way as part of the deal? go on...
23/08/2008 14:44:00
Yes, spiderspurs, good news for us, I think Berbatov is going to be a United player sooner rather than later. I hope i'm not getting ahead of myself, but I've just heard the commentator at the Spurs match say "Berbatov has been left out of the squad, and he's on his way to Manchester United". ;)
Man utd champions
23/08/2008 15:25:00
Spider spurs no deal for hargreaves how about Dong and Fraizer Campbell on loan?
23/08/2008 20:45:00
You can have Dong, but we'll keep Campbell, thanks.
Man utd champions
23/08/2008 21:20:00
dodgy dealing club - full stop.
23/08/2008 21:55:00
I feel United are short in Defence. If Vidic and Rio are out at some point, can Evans and Brown really hold down the fort? Doubt it.
23/08/2008 23:28:00
Have to wonder whether Berba is really as prolific as you think. Personally, I think Tevez will score more goals for you, given the same playing time. Berba is a class act in terms of silky skill and his touch is nothing short of incredible but I don't think he's likely to get you 25 league goals and he's going to cost a lot of money. If I was Fergie I'd just let Tevez carry on. Quick check on Wiki (not a totally reliable source but I think it's right here) Berba at Spurs: 70 apps, 27 goals. Tevez at United: 34 apps, 13 goals.
24/08/2008 00:52:00
its not only about goals, its his presence that will help, we need a striker that is big in stature and one that can take down long balls and hold the ball up easily which Berbatov is awesome at. We havent had a striker like that since Ruud, i remember everytime our keeper kicked the ball up to ruud he either brought it down and passed it to a team mate or he was foul(meaning we always kept possession), we need someone like that agan
24/08/2008 11:19:00
yeah. Cambel looks promising. We'll give u dong and throw in a free blender as well.
24/08/2008 16:10:00
Like Reddevils4ever89 said, Berba will provide another dimension in our play which we lacked for the past few years. he;ll be the pivoting point for rooney and tevez to break into attack. He can hold the ball for us, get some headers in for a change besides ronaldo's ones. and of course as already mentioned, get 20 goals. so we also wont have to worry about ronaldo keeping that 42 goal tally up this year as well.
24/08/2008 16:13:00
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