Former Manchester United and Tottenham striker Dimitar Berbatov signed a one-year deal with Monaco until the summer of 2015, the club announced on May 16.
Berbatov joined Monaco in the winter transfer window, on loan until the end of the season from Fulham, as a replacement for Monaco’s record signing Radamel Falcao, who suffered a long-term knee injury.
The Bulgarian dazzled in the Ligue 1, finishing the season with nine goals and three assists in 14 matches, and was voted the league’s player of the month for April.
Although he was unable to help the club win the championship, as Paris Saint-Germain successfully defended their title, his goals and performances played a key role in Monaco finishing second and securing a direct berth in the Uefa Champions League.
Berbatov’s move to Monaco has clearly spurred a renaissance of sorts for the 33-year-old former Bulgarian captain, whose last few years in English football have been trying.
Despite proving a success at Tottenham and later becoming Manchester United’s record signing at the time of his transfer in 2008, his last season at United (2011/12) saw him fall out of favour with Alex Ferguson and he barely played in the closing stages of the campaign.
A five-million pounds move to Fulham followed in the summer of 2012, but he looked increasingly unhappy with life in the lower reaches of the Premier League, particularly this season, with Fulham fighting against relegation.
Sometimes criticised for “not running enough”, both in England and when playing for Bulgaria (he retired from the national team in 2010 as Bulgaria’s all-time leading scorer with 48 goals), the switch appears to have worked well for the technically-gifted Berbatov.
(Berbatov won two English titles with United, including in 2010/11, when he also won the Premier League’s golden boot award. Photo: Gordon Marino/flickr.com)