Manchester United Daily – Berbatov to pen new deal as record revenue is announced

It was announced yesterday that Dimitar Berbatov will commence negotiations on a new contract at Manchester United. He is currently the top goal scorer in the Premier League and has had his best goal return for United since his move from Tottenham Hotspur in 2008.

His current deal is set to expire next summer and Ferguson is keen to tie him to a new long-term contract. Berbatov struggled to settle fully into his new surroundings but is finally starting to pay off the £30m transfer fee, and Sir Alex Ferguson admitted it was a tough decision to leave him out of United’s game against Manchester City at the weekend. The manager said: “I had to sit him down. I did not enjoy it.I told him he would play a part, and he did. It was a difficult decision.” It remains to be seen whether he will get a starting place in the Champions League when United meet Marseille next week.

Also yesterday, chief executive David Gill announced first quarter revenue of £24m which could enable United to record £100m revenue over the year, a remarkable sum that shows the club continues to attract huge interest both domestically and internationally. This could also allow United to spend in the summer after the outlay demonstrated in January by both Chelsea and Liverpool. The news comes after it emerged United narrowly missed out on completing some business in the transfer window. Ferguson was questioned about this and stated “We had an interest in one player, and I thought we had a chance of bringing him in, but the other parties involved weren’t ready and so we have put it away until the summer.

Following on from his fantastic display on Saturday Chris Smalling stated that part of his excellence in marshalling Carlos Tevez was down to Rio Ferdinand. He told the Manchester Evening News: “I was talking to Rio on Friday and he was giving me little pointers. He has played with and against Carlos Tevez for many years and seen him in training every day for a couple of years so he was giving me little bits of advice on how to play him.

“He was making the point that Carlos likes to feel the defenders at his back. So you let him have his touch before you move in and go for him. It was great advice because he is a tricky player. It was a really good challenge for me. To have that knowledge to tap into is incredible.

Smalling continued: “There was an emphasis on me coming into the team because Rio has been so solid, so to play my part in such a massive game and a big title match was brilliant. Rio and the coaches were telling me not to do anything rash. Their comments, coupled with what I knew from last season’s experience, helped me. It paid off and I hope it showed.

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