I’m still absolutely buzzing over Dimitar Berbatov’s second goal of his hat trick against Liverpool. An absolutely brilliant performance by the Bulgarian, and even better that it came against our most hated rivals. Two days after what was likely his best appearance in a United shirt, Berbatov is still dominating the headlines surrounding Old Trafford. The striker has earned high praise from newly-appointed skipper Nemanja Vidic. Also in the media, Evra insists United must quit conceding leads and a former Old Trafford hero suggests retirement is near.
It seems our Bulgarian striker is suddenly drawing praise from everyone, including our club’s new skipper. Nemanja Vidic claims that the players always knew how talented Berbatov was, and a change in his style is responsible for his improved performances. Vidic says that Berbatov has adapted his game to that of a poacher by getting himself into the box more often to provide opportunities for himself. Having found his role in the team, the Bulgarian now finds himself the Premier League’s joint-leading goalscorer with six. Vidic reckons that if Berbatov’s form continues it may be enough to drive United to the title and earn himself personal accolades such as Player of the Year. Meanwhile, Berbatov claims that his improvement is due to increased fitness. His off season fitness routine included running six miles a day, and he’s clearly been reaping the benefits. This start to the season has given Berbatov a confidence we haven’t seen in his time at Old Trafford, and he says in the past he was upset to disappoint supporters. Many fans have questioned if Berbatov has lived up to his club-record transfer fee, but should he continue to play at this level he will prove his worth. Rest assured Dimitar, I don’t think any United supporter is disappointed with you at the moment!
The team has seemed highly prone to conceding late goals this season, which has already seen the club miss out on four points in the Premier League. If not for Berbatov on Sunday, there may have been two more points that we let slip from our grasp. Patrice Evra has urged his teammates to sort out their defensive issues or they will have no hope of reclaiming the Premier League this season. There is no excuse for letting a team back him to the game at home when you hold a two goal advantage. Fulham may have been an unfortunate result, but with a two goal lead in stoppage time at Goodison there was no reason we shouldn’t have claimed all three points that day. Hopefully with Rio returning our defense can rediscover the near impenetrability it had in 2008-09.
While no longer our player, there is no doubt that Ruud van Nistelrooy is a club legend. In 219 appearance for the club, the Dutch striker netted 150 goals. Now at Hamburg, it seems Ruud may be preparing to hang up his boots. Even as his career nears its end he still maintains an impressive eye for goal with six goals in five matches for Hamburg this season. As he continues to age, Ruud says he must listen to his body and can no longer make long-term plans for his career. If this become reality and he calls time on his career at the end of this season, even though he moved on years ago, I will be sad to see him leave the game. The day he calls it quits, football will lose an incredible talent.
Reserves: For those interested in our youngsters, I would recommend checking out ManUnitedYouth’s full recap of the Reserves’ 5-1 victory over Bury. Neither Gabriel Obertan nor Bebe were included in yesterday’s match, so I would expect Sir Alex plans on including the duo in the squad for Wednesday’s Carling Cup match.
Quote of the Day: Dimitar Berbatov in The Guardian: “The way I feel right now, I feel alive. I have always said I am so lucky to play here – for these people, for this manager, for this club, with these players.”
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