Dimitar Berbatov Exclusive: Concentration is key for Man Utd in Milan

Manchester United captain Harry Maguire
Can Maguire marshall United in Milan?

Betfair Ambassador Dimitar Berbatov backs Man Utd to get past AC Milan tonight, urges Dele Alli to take his chance for Spurs and touches on the Cheltenham Festival...

"Zlatan is Sweden's all time leading goal-scorer and I'm sure that people in his country will be very happy to see that he is back for them. It's making me thinking about coming out of retirement and helping Bulgaria for the World Cup Qualifiers - that's a joke, of course!"

Dean Henderson could have reacted better to the corner that AC Milan scored from in last week's Europa League first leg. But it's also down to the defenders, who should not have given the Milan attackers the chance to get to the ball from the corner. You could go further back and say United shouldn't have given away the corner so late on in the game. United needed to be smarter at that stage of the game - keep the ball, try to draw fouls and defend the lead.

It's frustrating when a team loses concentration repeatedly. It makes you angry and raises a lot of questions. The only thing to do is to train and prepare mentally. In the end, it's about getting results in these tight games. United played well for 85 minutes against Milan but the match finished 1-1 - a result that benefits Milan. United's away form has been their strength this season, though, and they only need to score one in tonight's second leg.

Confident United will qualify

I am feeling positive ahead of the match in the San Siro and, with all respect to AC Milan, I am still confident that United will go through, but only if they concentrate for whole match.

We saw against West Ham on Sunday that United can be focused for 90 minutes and hold on to a 1-0 lead. Back in my day, a lot of our success at United was down to grinding out 1-0 wins. Beating someone 1-0 is a champions score. United can do it and, even though the style of football they come up against in Europe is different to the Premier League, they are still capable of holding a 1-0 lead.

De Gea faces strong challenge for number one shirt

Henderson has been doing a great job since stepping in and the goal for AC Milan has been his only mistake. These things happen to the best goalkeepers around the world. Overall, he is doing a fantastic job and is putting more pressure on David de Gea. It's good to see two great goalkeepers competing for the one spot because competition puts you on a different level.

Henderson is a goalkeeper for the future and at some point his time will come. It is going to be interesting to see what happens when De Gea comes back. Will he go back to being number one straightaway or will he have to wait for his chance?

David De Gea UCL - 1280.jpg

This is a big moment. De Gea's absence has been an opportunity for Henderson to show what he can do and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer faces a big decision about who starts now. De Gea may have to wait for his chance. It's all about reactions when it comes to these situations. De Gea has had ups and downs in his career, but I don't think anyone can question his ability, he is up there with the best and he has proven himself many, many times before.

Overall, I think United have two great options in both goalkeepers, it's great to watch this competition, but purely based on what he has done over the years, De Gea is still the number one for now.

Parents don't always know best - Cavani should stay

When I was a football player, my dad was involved in my career off the field. Edinson's Cavani's dad plays a similar role for his son. Parents think they are doing the best for us, but that's not always the case.

Cavani's dad has claimed the striker is unhappy at United but perhaps Cavani didn't know what his dad was going to say. Maybe Cavani felt disappointed about not play recently - I don't know, I'm just trying to understand what might have happened - but you don't want these types of things out in the public, especially when you are integrated in the team in a good way and scoring goals.

Sometimes, your dad, if he is acting like an agent, will act in your best interest. But it can backfire, as with any other agent. Like when Mino Raiola said Paul Pogba was unhappy - it doesn't necessarily help the player and his situation. In the end it's down to the player and what he wants. I would be very happy to see Cavani stay at United because he is bringing goals and experience to the team and creating competition for places.

I'm pretty sure that when the transfer window opens United will be linked with a lot of strikers and the one problem that Cavani has is that he isn't 21. But he is fit and he knows where the goal is, so he can still help United. I wouldn't be surprised if he left in the summer because football is business, and if he is homesick then I'm sure he would prefer to leave, but I would be happy to see him stay.

Lamela's wonder goal can't hide Spurs' problems

Last weekend's north London derby was reminder that, in derbies, anything can happen. Spurs had been performing much better than Arsenal going into the match, and they even took the lead, but in the end they couldn't keep hold of the advantage. Was it the pressure? Lack of concentration? I don't know but, in the end, Arsenal got the better of them.

Spurs weren't as attacking as they had been in recent games. I don't know why that was but I'm sure Mourinho had his reasons. The first goal had a big impact. When you go ahead you have to protect that lead, sometimes it might even go against the manager's instructions, but the players automatically drop back to defend their lead. It wasn't the right way to play against Arsenal who exploited Spurs' mistakes.

Erik Lamela CL 1280.jpg

It was an unbelievable goal from Erik Lamela and, at moments like that, you just have to applaud. As a player you need know when to do something like that because the right moment for it will come. You need to have something like that in you, you need to play with flair and have your body accustomed to these kinds of movements on the pitch, otherwise you risk looking stupid.

Lamela has done similar things to this in the past and he is always looking to take on players and run with the ball. It was no surprise to me to see that he pulled it off against Arsenal. The moment was just right and he used his intuition to execute it brilliantly.

It's a massive blow to lose a player like Son. He's vital for Spurs but they can't rush him back from injury and risk something bad happening again. This is going to be a problem for Spurs, but at the same time it is a great opportunity for the other players. Gareth Bale will and Lucas Moura will play more, and Dele Alli will step up. We all know Dele had some setbacks but now one man's bad luck is another's good luck.

It's been a weird season for Dele, and in a way it's strange to question if he is going to take this opportunity because not long ago he was one of the first names on the Spurs and England team sheets. All of a sudden something changed and he wasn't a regular, there were times when he didn't even get in the squad, but now he is getting more game time and he has a big opportunity to show what he can do.

I would like to see him play because he plays the football I like to see. I just hope he is fully concentrated and follows the manager's instructions, because not doing so may have been the reason for his absence earlier this season.

The League Cup final should be priority number one for Spurs but they also have a great chance in the Europa League so should concentrate there. I also think they still have a good chance to push for top four in the Premier League.

Six points isn't the biggest gap and they have a game in hand, so I'm not going to write them off for top four just yet.

Zlatan is back for Sweden

Sweden have recalled 39-year-old Zlatan, and he responded by tweeting 'the return of the God.' Nothing surprises me here, we all know how Ibra thinks of himself and everything that he has achieved in his career.

He's Sweden's all time leading goal-scorer and I'm sure that people in his country will be very happy to see that he is back for them. It's making me thinking about coming out of retirement and helping Bulgaria for the World Cup Qualifiers - that's a joke, of course! Zlatan can still bring a lot of things to any team on the pitch, and it will be interesting to see the impact he will have.

I've been to the racing - but don't ask me for tips!

I went to the horse racing when I was at United with all the boys and when I was at Spurs we went to greyhound racing. I know people really enjoy it and people find it fascinating, I respect it and it's a massive sport.

At United, I was in the dressing room with Sir Alex, who has a stable of horses and Michael Owen, who has a stable of horses and they were talking about racing all the time! All the players in the changing room were sharing tips with Sir Alex.

Wayne Rooney, John O'Shea and Darren Fletcher used to own a horse together, I never paid much attention to their tips because I didn't know what they were talking about. It was like they were talking alien to me. So don't ask for my Cheltenham tips!

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