Football

Berbatov stars in United win

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After pledging his short-term future to Manchester United, Dimitar Berbatov served notice he intends to fight his way back into Sir Alex Ferguson's good books with an excellent performance in a one-sided romp over the MLS All-Stars.

With Javier Hernandez back at the team hotel, having happily recovered from the concussion he suffered at Wednesday's training session, Berbatov took centre stage. The Bulgarian played a major role in a superb one-touch move that also involved Wayne Rooney as Anderson put the visitors in front.

Then, after Park Ji-sung had added a second, a combination of skill, agility and brute force allowed Berbatov to lash home United's third before Danny Welbeck completed the scoring in the second half.

It was rather disappointing for All-Stars skipper David Beckham, who tried hard enough and went close on a couple of occasions, including a curling free-kick that crashed into the side-netting near the end, but lacked sufficient support.

United took some time to get going. However, it was not long before they went ahead. Picking up possession 10 yards outside the box, Berbatov surged forward, fed Wayne Rooney to his left, then flicked a sublime return pass back to the England striker, who had completed the initial one-two.

Rooney spotted Anderson's midfield burst, laid the ball into the Brazilian's path and he slotted home with ease. It was a marvellous goal by any standard and worthy of Berbatov's view of the game.

Beckham brought a fingertip save out of Anders Lindegaard, who was preferred to new arrival David de Gea. For all their hosts' industry, it was United who struck again just before half-time when Park collected Ashley Young's square ball and showed some neat skill inside the area before rattling a left-foot shot into the far corner.

Having claimed one brilliant assist, Berbatov then broke his duck for the tour in quite magnificent style too. Set free by Rooney, the Bulgarian deftly lifted the ball over Tally Hall, then, when it bounced back off the bar, he controlled with his chest before volleying home from point-blank range.

Ferguson made six changes on the hour, with Berbatov one of the men replaced, although he gave his £30.75million record signing a big smile and a handshake as he came off. Danny Welbeck did not take long to mark his appearance, although his 20-yard effort did require a massive deflection off Geoff Cameron before it flew past Hall.

It maintained United's 100% record, although the stiffest test is still to come, against a Barcelona side that defeated them so conclusively in last season's Champions League final and have already landed more silverware, beating hosts Bayern Munich overnight to lift the annual Audi Cup.

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

Topics:
European News
Dimitar Berbatov
Football
David Beckham
Premier League
Anders Lindegaard
Alex
Danny Welbeck
UEFA Champions League
Manchester United
Ashley Young
Wayne Rooney
Javier Hernandez
Anderson
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