Manchester United may be far off the pace of their rivals Manchester City and Liverpool at the top of the table but that hasn’t stopped club legend Dimitar Berbatov weighing in on the title-race debate.
Heading into the final game of the top-flight season on Sunday afternoon, City look poised to win their fourth Premier League title in five years but the former Red Devil insisted it is not over yet with Jurgen Klopp’s men hot on their heels.
Liverpool had seemingly blown their chances when they drew 2-2 against Tottenham at Anfield at the beginning of the month but City dropped points of their own the following week when West Ham held them to a stalemate.
Dimitar Berbatov claimed the title race between Jurgen Klopp’s (left) Liverpool and Pep Guardiola’s (right) Man City is ‘not finished’ heading into the final game of the Premier League
The ex-striker insisted it is all left to play for, despite City holding an advantage over the Reds
With Pep Guardiola’s side holding just a one-point lead over the Reds, Betfair Ambassador Berbatov insisted it is all still to play for on the final day of the season.
‘I think everything is possible when it comes to big games and the Premier League,’ he told Sportsmail. ‘It was a major boost for City that Liverpool dropped points. But nothing is finished yet.
‘If someone can stop them it’s Liverpool. Even though you’re Man City, the opposition always plays 100 per cent against you and it’s up to them now, when they have that lead, to keep it and not drop points.
‘But at the same time we have witnessed major upsets in the Premier League. Every team can drop points even if you’re City or Liverpool. It doesn’t matter. So it’s not finished yet.’
The reigning Premier League champions are poised to win their fourth title in five years
The United hero (pictured playing in a Legends game against Liverpool) insisted any side can drop points
With the title race coming down to the wire as it hits a dramatic and thrilling climax, the Premier League has not disappointed fans with the level of entertainment.
And, when asked if it was the best top-flight title race to date, Berbatov claimed it was ‘up there’.
He said: ‘It’s the Premier League, you have big teams, the drama – you have everything that you want to have in the way of football.
‘And we’re going to have plenty more in the Premier League for sure. Let’s enjoy this ride between these two teams.’
Berbatov claimed if any team can stop City in their tracks it would be Klopp’s Reds
Meanwhile, a long drop down the table, Berbatov’s former side United are 31 points off the pace set by City and Liverpool – a far cry from contenders.
The Red Devils travel to Selhurst Park on Sunday looking for a win to stay above West Ham and clinch Europa League football in sixth place.
Berbatov admitted United’s absence at the top of the table is disappointing but conceded that the quality of Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp’s sides is unrivalled.
‘Obviously my team is not there,’ he said. ‘So it’s a pity for me but City and Liverpool playing such good football that they fully deserve to be where they are.’
Berbatov’s former side United are 31 points off the pace set by leaders City and Liverpool
He admitted it was a ‘pity’ not to see his former team matching the quality of their rivals
United’s final game of the season will also be interim manager Ralf Rangnick’s last game in charge with Erik ten Hag poised to take the reins at the end of the campaign.
The Dutchman has already held meetings with his United assistants Steve McClaren and Mitchell van der Gaag and the new boss will be in the stands at Selhurst Park on Sunday ahead of an expected mass clear out.
Berbatov insisted that Ten Hag will already be compiling a list of players that will be shown the door.
He also said Ten Hag will be eyeing potential transfer targets but claimed that the new manager will not be chasing after ‘the best players’ in the world.
New Man United boss Erik ten Hag has been pictured in London to kick start their new era
He said: ‘Ten Hag for sure is now working on what players he needs, which player he doesn’t need, which players can be sold, which players will come.
‘You need to find the right players – and I say the right players, not the best players – for the way you want to play football.
‘I’m curious to see exactly what Ten Hag’s ideas are but judging on his way of working with Ajax, he has a great reputation and let’s hope he knows who are the right players for his system so he can bring that success back to United.’
The Dutchman won his third Eredivise title in charge of Ajax this season before his departure
However, Berbatov insisted that the Old Trafford faithful may have to wait a while longer for that success to return to the red side of Manchester.
‘I honestly hope that it can be in the first season that they win the Premier League title, but it’s probably going to take more than that,’ he admitted.
The former striker insisted that for United to become contenders once again a mass clear out was necessary at the club.
‘I remember that Ralf Rangnick said that some players will be going, other players will be coming in.
‘This is football, this is normal, and football can be cruel. In my opinion this shift needs to happen.
Sunday’s final day showdown will also be interim manager Ralf Rangnick’s last game in charge
‘New players need to come in that can be full of new energy and knowing that this is what the new coach wants from us.
‘And then trust me, it is going to be easier for everyone connected to the club to produce good football.
‘Of course you have players in the team that deserve to have more time with United and they have proven that over the years for sure.
‘All the players in the team are talented but one way or another some of them were not able to produce and show that talent 100 per cent.
‘It is better for some of these players to maybe find a new challenge, a new adventure and for another player to come in and start from scratch.’
For more from Betfair Ambassador, Dimitar Berbatov, head to: https://betting.betfair.com/football/