Manchester United - Fergie Reneged On Promise To Berbatov
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Fergie Reneged On Promise To Berbatov

When Sir Alex recently confessed that he could not see Owen and Rooney playing together, journalists focused on the 'death' of Owen's World Cup dream. It is hardly unexpected of course but as Owen barely has a realistic chance of getting onto that plane, there's a more interesting angle to those quotes.

Fergie said that paired with Owen, Rooney should be dropped back into the hole and he prefers to play him further up front, therefore he sees him as Berbatov's natural partner. This is strange, for several reasons.

First, why is Fergie reluctant to play Rooney in the hole, behind the main striker? That is where he excels for England and where he excelled for United in the past. But it's the less important issue, as Rooney is clearly playing well enough as the main attacker.

The more important thing is that Fergie promised this summer that he would play Berbatov in his right position, that is to say, not as deep as last season. But now he's as good as admitted that he does not wish to put him further up the field and he feels that his best option is to play him behind the main striker.

Sure, theoretically, this view has its merits: Berbatov has a wonderful first touch and great vision which make him suited for a 'playmaker' role. However, he did not perform well enough in this role last season and Fergie did not deny it, that's why he talked about playing him in the wrong position! But if that is the only position he can imagine Berbatov in then it would make more sense to cash in on him and buy a striker who would revel behind Rooney.

Berbatov was not nearly as bad as his critics and ABUs suggest but he never graced the heights he reached at Spurs where he was usually the main striker, the focal point of the attack. And he shows no signs of growing accustomed to this role, he looks like someone who does not understand his teammates and whose teammates don't understand him. Therefore if things do not change I'm afraid we're approaching a painful parting which would be a shame as I still believe Berbatov has the qualities to be a success at United.

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The Journalist

Writer: Zae Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Monday January 4 2010

Time: 12:18PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

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Berbatov hasnt been bad, he has just been bad compared to the price that he was bought for. I just don't think the management know what to do with him to utilise his abilities.
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04/01/2010 12:25:00

:D no refunds!
Report Abuse
04/01/2010 12:40:00

no, please let's not get carried away... Berbatov is playing far worse then he did at Tottenham. He looks more lazy then usual, and can't seem to get a run of goals. By me first mistake (his) was to leave Tottenham and second mistake was the club's for overpaying...
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04/01/2010 12:40:00

Yes, he plays far worse than at Spurs where he proved that he is one of the best strikers in the league. I don't know if it's his fault, if this club is too big for him or that Fergie can't find his place and that's the problem. I don't know but at the end of the day if he can't improve significantly, he should be sold in the summer.
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04/01/2010 13:07:00

Zae: Yes, you are too big for Berbatov :) I am already laughing by the thought that he could/would have been a legend at Spurs, but in a few years will be forgotten from your memories :) Or could it be your tactics doesn't suit him? You are looking more and more like Aston Villa this counter-attack your preferred style?
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04/01/2010 13:20:00

No, obviously not preferred - it's just that we are better at it than breaking down opponents with patient approach play. We do not have enough creativity and that was a problem last season as well.
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04/01/2010 13:24:00

The words "Moody Bulgarian" and dressing room discontent spring all too readily to mind. When he was the focus of every attack at Spurs he was simply superb, perhaps he just cannot get it on with players that of a similar standard to himself.
Graeme in Spain
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04/01/2010 13:37:00

i think he is suffering from price tag pressure. too scared to express himself and lost a bit of self belief. same reason keane flopt at liverpool. keane has still not recovered by the way. maybe united should swap us rooney or carrick for robbie keane then u would have a strikeforce that can play together
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04/01/2010 13:56:00

We just have to play berba as the main striker and rooney behind him and only then will we see the best of berba.Otherwise he won't score enough as he just won't make enough runs in the box, he will just be there standing in the middle creating more than scoring.
Antriksh (abmtd)
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04/01/2010 14:31:00

35 Million your having a laugh, Becchio to us for free twice the player
Tiny T
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04/01/2010 15:15:00

Watching the match on Sunday only confirms how bad this season has really been. Definitely not the fault of Berbatov. Forget about his price tag, there is only so much one player can do. Fergie is confused as to if he what formation he wants to play with what players. Play a 4 2 4 or a 4 3 3 and play it properly.
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04/01/2010 15:54:00

Perhaps you should have kept the "non-goalscorer" Tevez? Oh sorry, forgot, he wasn't worth the money. :) P.S. Berbaflop - 6 goals, all comps, Tevez 12 goals all comps. I guess it just goes to show that taggart has lost the plot, cause he never got the best out of Carlos and Berbaflop has gone backwards.
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05/01/2010 00:43:00

No lets not forget the pricetag. 30.75m we absolutley pulled your pants down. I feel sick about the whole Berba thing i really do. He should have stayed and becomed a legend at Spurs, like someone already said hel be forgot about in a few years time as that flop. Shame.
Report Abuse
07/01/2010 14:33:00

And arent you guys on the verge of bankrupcy? I cant see it myself but apparently your interest payments are getting higher and higher?
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07/01/2010 14:34:00

Don't know what to really say when we signed him the price tag seemed reasonable to the quality he displayed now it's just getting boring something needs to change with his game if we want to see the best of him again.
One United 23
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08/01/2010 10:22:00


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