Berbatov Inspires His Teammates, Says Rio
Rio Ferdinand hailed Dimitar Berbatov's arrival as the decisive influence in Wayne Rooney's current brilliant form.
Rooney scored seven goals in his last five competitive games, a record which any player would be proud of. Pundits praised, and rightly so, Emile Heskey for getting the best out of Rooney but Berbatov should also get some recognition for it, argues Rio.
'Wayne is confident, playing well - and being honest, one of the reasons I was happy that Berbatov signed for United was that I knew it would inspire other players in the team to step their game up another level,' said Ferdinand.
'It's not just the forwards but the other players as well - because when a new player comes in that's what happens.
'Everyone wants to impress that player and show them why they are playing for Manchester United. I think 'Wazza' has taken that on board and gone from strength to strength.
'I think they can be a great pairing - but what I'm getting at is Berbatov's arrival will help him become a better player individually and go to another level.'
Ferdinand, of course, knows full well that the papers' opinion that Rooney had a rubbish season is, well, rubbish.
''Wazza' scored 15 goals last season, and made 15 'assists'. That was a great season, and yet he wants to keep on improving and keep on getting better - and he's doing that.
'Some players go into their shells and can't handle it.
'They think 'I can't do this'. They either end up playing rubbish, or you get others like Wayne who take on that battle head first - and he's doing that.'
Now let's hope they do not jinx him with all these words!