Can you imagine a Berba-free Premier League? If so, shame on you!
While Sir Alex Ferguson always seems slightly sceptical no matter how many goals his record signing scores, most Manchester United fans appear to love them some Dimitar Berbatov. And what’s not to love?
Having been treated to the likes of Eric Cantona and Cristiano Ronaldo, they are perhaps the one set of British supporters trained to shun the general tendency to worship work-rate over sublime skill.
However, despite an absurd 27 goals in 28 league starts since August 2010, the whispers that the brilliant Bulgarian will deftly brush past the Old Trafford exit soon are beginning to sound more like high-pitched screams.
The list of possible destinations reads PSG, Bayer Leverkusen, Bayern Munich, CSKA Moscow or Anzhi Makhachkala. Or, you might suspect, as far away from Manchester as he can jog without reneging on his vow never to break into a sweat.
But as much as grrr grrr grrr he makes everything look effortless and grrr grrr grrr he doesn’t sprint around wildly like a poisoned dog and grrr grrr grrr his hair is too spiky, the Premier League will be a lesser place if he leaves.
So, it’s time to put out a call to any English club with a passing interest in a regular scorer who is one of the few players in this country worth buying a season ticket just to see strut his stuff – save our Berbatov.
Who could complete this heroic act? Not Manchester City or Liverpool – they won’t get their hands on him unless his contract is allowed to expire – and surely not Spurs, who didn’t enjoy the returning hero routine when it was performed by Robbie Keane. And we don’t trust Chelsea not to break him.
So it would appear that we are investing our hopes in Arsenal – a one-way ticket to disappointment, their fans might argue – with Newcastle even more unlikely saviours.
The story goes that back in Bulgaria as a teen, Berba would virtually live in a Newcastle strip bearing the number of idol Alan Shearer. A move to Tyneside would require Mike Ashley to put his hand in his pocket and a significant lowering of expectations on the striker’s part, but we can dream…