Berbatov Breaks Liverpool Resistance ‘Thrice’




Dimitar Berbatov

Dimitar Berbatov

Old Trafford, London: Dimitar Berbatov scored a hat-trick as Manchester United downed Liverpool 3-2 while Chelsea crushed Blackpool 4-0 to open up a four-point lead at the top of the Premier League on Sunday.

Berbatov sealed victory for United with an 84th-minute winner at Old Trafford after Liverpool had recovered from two goals down thanks to a second-half brace from skipper Steven Gerrard. The victory saw Sir Alex Ferguson’s side go level on points to share the second spot with Arsenal, but a good four points behind Chelsea, which maintained its 100 per cent record with a merciless demolition of Blackpool at Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea’s fifth back to back win was settled in the opening 45 minutes, with Salomon Kalou, Didier Drogba and Florent Malouda (2) putting the Blues 4-0 up at the break.

The defending champions have now rattled in a remarkable 21 goals in only five games and could have had made it 5-0 had they not been denied a penalty in injury time after a foul on Didier Drogba.

In the day’s other match, Manchester City moved up to fourth with a 2-0 victory away at Wigan. Skipper Carlos Tevez and Yaya Toure got the goals at a rain-soaked DW Stadium as City registered it second win of the campaign.

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini said his decision to hand the captaincy to Tevez was bearing fruits after watching the Argentine score before setting up Yaya’s first goal in English football. “I thought about it during the summer and I spoke to Carlos about it,” Mancini said.

“He is an important player and he can improve as captain and we can have more of him.” Carlos Tevez was previously playing for Manchester United for a couple of seasons until his transfer to Man City.

But the highlight of the day was at Old Trafford, where Berbatov stole the show with a fantastic display that left Liverpool broken and languishing near the foot of the table in 16th position after five games.

It was the first time a Manchester United player had scored a hat-trick in 64 years, and left Berbatov on top of the goalscoring charts for the 2010-11 season with six goals from five games. “It was probably my best day as a Red Devil” Berbatov said. “Obviously I am bound to be happy and I’m returning home with a smile on my face. I am going home to play with my kids.”

Berbatov put United 1-0 ahead on 42 minutes after being left in acres of space by marker Fernando Torres when Ryan Giggs swung in a corner. The Bulgarian international then doubled United’s lead on 59 minutes with a sublime effort, using one touch to control  Evan Nani’s cross before sending an overhead kick crashing in the underside of the Liverpool cross bar.

He sealed it 3-2 in the 84th minute despite the comeback by Liverpool in the second half. Ferguson later hailed the performance of Berbatov, who is enjoying his best run of form for United since his transfer from Tottenham in 2008 in a deal worth 30.75 million British Pounds.

By: Devesh D. Bhuwad

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