Dimitar Berbatov backs Man United to finish in the top four because Ralf Rangnick provides ‘stability and momentum’, with former Old Trafford striker saying another Man City title win isn’t a forgone conclusion
- Man United are eight games unbeaten since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was fired
- Interim coach Ralf Rangnick has steadied the ship as they push for the top four
- Former Old Trafford striker Dimitar Berbatov has backed them to achieve that
- Bulgarian legend doesn’t believe Manchester City will run away with the title
- Chelsea and Liverpool are struggling to keep pace with Pep Guardiola’s team
Dimitar Berbatov believes his former club Manchester United can finish in the top four this season and doesn’t believe the title race is a foregone conclusion.
Manchester City have left Chelsea and Liverpool, let alone United, trailing behind after opening up an eight-point gap at the top.
But the former striker has noted the improvement in United’s fortunes since the sacking of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, with interim coach Ralf Rangnick unbeaten in five matches since he came in.
Manchester United are eight matches unbeaten as they approach 2022 with optimism
Former United striker Dimitar Berbatov has backed them to achieve a top four finish
Prior to that, caretaker manager Michael Carrick won two and drew one of his three games, meaning the Old Trafford club can enter 2022 with greater optimism.
And Berbatov said: ‘I don’t want it to be just a three-horse race, although it’s now looking more like a two-horse race.
‘I want to see five or six teams push each other to make it more interesting for everyone following the Premier League.
‘Man United have a great chance to build momentum and get on a good run. They could be back in the mix under Ralf Rangnick. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.’
The Bulgarian added to Betfair: ‘Everyone can beat anyone in the Premier League. It’s still an open race and there are a lot of teams that can still get in the mix if they go on the good run.
Interim coach Ralf Rangnick has steadied the ship at Old Trafford after Solskjaer’s dismissal
Cristiano Ronaldo’s goal sealed United’s 3-1 win over Burnley as they ended the year on a high
Man United fixtures
Premier League unless stated
Monday Wolves (H)
January 10 Aston Villa (H)
FA Cup third round
January 15 Aston Villa (A)
January 22 West Ham (H)
February 8 Burnley (A)
February 12 Southampton (H)
‘Without a doubt though, Man City are the team to beat and at the minute it looks as though Liverpool are in the driving seat if Guardiola’s team is to be overtaken.’
But while Liverpool lost 1-0 at Leicester in their last match, City continued their relentless winning form with a 1-0 success at Brentford – a 10th league win on the bounce.
Guardiola’s side are a remarkable 19 points ahead of their rivals across Manchester, with Rangnick’s team fighting against Arsenal, West Ham and Tottenham to qualify for the Champions League.
2021 proved to be a turbulent year for United, where the Bulgarian played between 2008 and 2012.
Berbatov added: ‘I want to see stable management and consistency in producing good results, especially at the moment. Momentum going into the second half of the season is so important.
‘If they continue on a good run and they do okay on the pitch and have that consistency and winning factor then it will give the dressing room and the management a real belief.
Manchester City are eight points clear at the top of the Premier League and the side to catch
‘Things will start to flow and everyone’s hopes are high for Rangnick. His job isn’t easy and he has a lot of work to do but I just want him to bring some stability to United in the way that the team will play – attacking football, young players given chances and sticking to a system that makes the team better.
‘If they get that right, 2022 could be very promising for Man United.’
United host Wolves at Old Trafford on Monday, having concluded 2021 with a 3-1 win over Burnley to move back into the Premier League top six.
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