Berbatov to Newcastle? Bulgarian in talks to join Magpies
If you’re halfway through a gruelling Championship campaign, you could do a lot worse than sign up a mercurial genius with a pair of Premier League titles to his name.
It has been reported this week that Dimitar Berbatov could be set for a return to England, with Newcastle the club to welcome him back.
The former Manchester United and Tottenham striker is about to turn 36, but it’s claimed the impact of Zlatan Ibrahimovic – also 35 years of age – has inspired Berbatov to carry on.
The Bulgarian has been without a club since leaving Greek outfit PAOK Salonika in the summer, but is believed to be still in good enough shape to play.
And a move to Newcastle would hold special relevance to the former Bayer Leverkusen hitman, having grown up idolising the Toon Army’s number nine, Alan Shearer.
Despite his advancing years, the experience of current Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez will ensure the Magpies get the most out of Berbatov should a move occur.
Benitez’s side were odds-on favourites to claim the second-tier title this season, but a recent dip in form has seen Brighton steal a march.
Sitting two points behind the Seagulls having played a game more, Reading, Huddersfield and Leeds are within striking distance of sending Newcastle into the play-offs.
So the guile, quality, composure and experience of Berbatov could be just the tonic they need.
And who knows, five months from now, the Bulgarian could be replicate his childhood idol and become a cult hero on Tyneside.
Newcastle head to the capital this weekend, when they take on Brentford at Griffin Park.
In what will be just the fifth meeting between the sides since 1955, Benitez’s men are 20/21 for victory.
But any other result in west London would be the latest indicator they could use a Berbatov boost in the coming months.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing