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More pressure on Berbatov at Man Utd as media exhausts Rooney

| 24.09.2010

Manchester United may have to continue to rely on Dimitar Berbatov for their goals in the coming months as Wayne Rooney struggles to get to grips with the media attention that he is under.

Rooney scored 34 goals last season, but has looked a shadow of that player since, first with England at the World Cup and then in the Premier League, where he has scored just once in four games.

The 24-year-old’s private life has been under scrutiny since he admitted to cheating on his wife and United boss Sir Alex Ferguson believes that having his every footstep tracked is wearing Rooney down.

He told Gazzetta dello Sport: “He is realising what it means to be at the centre of media attention for non-football-related questions. I don’t think the boy can turn a corner at the moment without a camera on him.

“You want to play and enjoy your football without that attention on you, because that can be quite exhausting. He would like to keep playing with freedom, but the siege of the tabloids can wear out anyone.”

Berbatov was almost non-existent for United last season, but has shown a new lease of life during the current campaign which has significantly helped United with Rooney out of form.

The Bulgarian has scored six goals in five Premier League games and will be keen to find the target again at Bolton next, not only for his own personal gain, but to keep the Red Devils on the coattails of leaders Chelsea.

Manchester United are 8/15 to win away at Bolton, with Berbatov 5/6 to score at any point within the 90 minutes.

His fine start to the season has also seen him backed into 7/1 to be the Premier League’s top scorer come May, while Rooney has drifted out to 12/1.

Manchester United are currently four points behind Chelsea and 5/2 to win the Premier League. See the complete Premier League winners market.



Ed Needham