English Premier League

Dimitar Berbatov: I don't blame Martial for wanting to leave United

Betfair Ambassasdor Dimitar Berbatov
Former-United number nine Berba has sympathy for Martial

Martial needs to look for an exit and restart his career somewhere else. He needs to go somewhere he is loved and respected and feels that the manager trusts him.

Betfair Ambassador Dimitar Berbatov shares his advice for United's want-away striker Anthony Martial and hails Sergio Aguero as one of the Premier League's greats...

I'm not surprised that Anthony Martial wants to leave Manchester United. He is fit and ready to go but he isn't playing games. Martial is a good player and other clubs will want him. I don't blame him if he is looking to go somewhere else.

In my case, when I left United, it was a little different. I was already in my thirties, whereas he is only 26. He is well known in the world of football and he's not even in his prime yet, so he will have a lot of options. It's disappointing that he wants to leave but I understand it because he is good enough to play regularly and he has a lot of football ahead of him, so he needs to play.

Martial must talk to Rangnick about future

He needs to speak to the coach and see what his intentions are and if he doesn't like the answers then it's his choice to ask to leave the club. I know how difficult that can be and know Marital is in a difficult situation. Cristiano Ronaldo, Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho, Mason Greenwood and Edinson Cavani are all ahead of him. Even if you are the best coach in the world it's difficult to please everyone up front and at some point everyone will be disappointed.

I'd encourage Martial to go to Ralf Rangnick's office and tell him about his pain and say what he wants. Martial should have an honest conversation with Rangnick, because that way the player will know exactly where he stands in the team and if he doesn't like what he hears then he should ask to leave.

For players, the most important thing is loving to play football football. At the top level you make money wherever you play. Nobody wants to sit there not playing and taking a salary. At 26, you need to play football. Martial has the quality to be a top player. I was expecting him to give more and more for United, but if it isn't working then he should go and look to play somewhere else.

Anthony Martial 956.jpg

It's a very difficult situation to be in, but based on my experience, Martial needs to look for an exit and restart his career somewhere else. He needs to go somewhere he is loved and respected, he needs to feel that the manager trusts him.

I know him from when we played together at Monaco together. He needs the confidence that comes from knowing that the manager trusts him because his game depends on one-on-one situations, and you can't beat players all the time. If he has the confidence to beat defenders, even if he loses the ball sometimes, he has the quality to do something special, he just needs the confidence.

Aguero is one of the true greats

If anything, Sergio Aguero an underrated striker, considering everything he has done in football, the goals he has scored and the impact he had in the Premier League with Manchester City.

He is definitely one of the best strikers ever to play in the Premier League, not only for his goals but for the way he saw and played the game. His movement and passing was next level. It's unfortunate and very sad that he has had to retire. He should be proud of everything he has done in football.

He's in the top three best players in the Premier League's history. there have been a lot of foreign players to grace football in England and the players that come straight into my mind for their greatness are Thierry Henry, Eric Cantona, Cristiano Ronaldo and Sergio Aguero.

The Argentine is up there with the true greats and I am sure that he will be satisfied when he looks back, having earned the respect of the football community, remembering the goals he scored and the trophies he won.

I will never forget him for that goal - the one goal that will stay forever in the minds of all Reds for the wrong reasons - the goal that won City the title. He disappointed us greatly, but it was a great moment for City.


I remember it well. I was at the Stadium of Light, along with my United team-mates, Sir Alex Ferguson and the coaching staff. We were waiting and waiting for the final whistle from the Etihad to confirm us as champions, until Aguero changed the destiny of the Premier League title with that 94th minute goal. It's the moment that he will be forever known for.

I remember when we would come up against City, the pre-match and half-time talks were always about paying attention to Aguero because he can score goals that you don't expect. He was one of the true greats.

Top four race is heating up

It's getting to be a very tight race for a top four spot in the Premier League, all the way down to eight place where Wolves are on 24 points. There is a chance for everybody to climb and surprise people. There's going to be a lot of pressure over the Christmas period to get points, so it doesn't matter how you play just get three points.

United have a good run of fixtures and I don't care how they perform, they just need to get three points, 1-0 wins, take them. When you have a lot of games coming up it's about getting the job done. This goes not just for United but for everyone that is fighting for top four. This is the Premier League, everyone can pull off a surprise that's why it's so important to be able to play ugly and get the three points.

Spurs are also in the running and have three games in hand. Under Antonio Conte, top four is a real possibility for them this season. It's always the same thing with Tottenham, though, they need consistency. They have to stay fresh and be prepared to win ugly because everyone has high hopes for them but it always ends in disappointment. So, let's leave them out of the spotlight and hope that they will climb the table steadily.

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