Berbatov puts United on guard against teams raising their game

Dimitar Berbatov is baffled by Manchester United's form on the road and wants an improvement as the race for the Premier League title enters a crucial phase.

The Bulgarian striker believes part of the problem stems from the fact so many teams are raising their game against the leaders. United suffered their third away league defeat on Sunday when they lost 3-1 at Liverpool.

Yet at home Sir Alex Ferguson's side have been invincible with 40 points taken out of a possible 42. Berbatov said: "We haven't won as many games as we should have away from home, but that's not because we haven't tried to. We never go into a game looking for a draw or thinking we'd be happy with a point. We aim to win each game.

"The difficulty is that other teams lift their game when they play Manchester United. We're the biggest club, so it's only natural. I understand that. That makes our job harder, but that's not an excuse: we need to be better away from home.

"At Old Trafford, we're doing really well. We're entertaining the fans, we're scoring a lot of goals. The aim is to bring that to our away performances."

Following United's back-to-back away defeats at Chelsea and Liverpool, the race for the title has got considerably tighter.

United are only three points ahead of Arsenal and they have a game in hand while reigning champions Chelsea have designs on a late surge after beating Blackpool 3-1 on Monday.

With Manchester City and Tottenham also pushing for a place in the top four, not to mention Liverpool's revival under Kenny Dalglish, it promises to be a fascinating finish to the campaign.

Berbatov believes the competition is healthy for the English game. He said: "Next year there'll be even more teams up there. Football is changing all the time and, especially in England, the gap between the top clubs and the bottom clubs is closing.

"Everybody's strong, everybody's buying top players. It's great for football.

"There are so many games and the schedule is so tight that often the team with the most experienced players and the team that keeps its players freshest ends up succeeding," he added. "If you do have those things, you'll do well."

Berbatov remains the top flight's leading scorer with 19 goals even though he has failed to find the target in his past six league games.

Asked if he had ever lost confidence during his time at United, he responded: "Of course, many times. Sometimes you don't play well or you don't score and in those times the pressure comes from all around you, as well as from yourself.

"You can find yourself doubting yourself. But that's when you need to keep faith and realise everything is going to be OK. You work hard in training and keep doing the things you're good at."



Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor and Clara have their first real heart to heart since he regenerated in 'Deep Breath'
TV
Arts and Entertainment
James Hewitt has firmly denied being Harry’s father
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
Jamie Oliver
filmTV chef Jamie Oliver turned down role in The Hobbit
News
The official police photograph of Dustin Diamond taken after he was arrested in Wisconsin
peopleDownfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Jeremy Clarkson, left, and Richard Hammond upset the locals in South America
tvReview: Top Gear team flee Patagonia as Christmas special reaches its climax in the style of Butch and Sundance
News
people
Sport
Ashley Barnes of Burnley scores their second goal
footballMan City vs Burnley match report
News
news
Arts and Entertainment
Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca alongside Harrison Ford's Han Solo in 'Star Wars'
film
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Man of action: Christian Bale stars in Exodus: Gods and Kings
film
Life and Style
Apple showed no sign of losing its talent for product launches with the new, slightly larger iPhone 6 making headlines
techSecurity breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Arts and Entertainment
Catherine (Sarah Lancashire) in Happy Valley ((C) Red Productions/Ben Blackall)
TV
Arts and Entertainment
Clueless? Locked-door mysteries are the ultimate manifestation of the cerebral detective story
booksAs a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
Homeless Veterans appeal: Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served

Homeless Veterans appeal

Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

Scarred by the bell

The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
The Locked Room Mysteries: As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor Otto Penzler explains the rules of engagement

The Locked Room Mysteries

As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Amy Adams on playing painter Margaret Keane in Tim Burton's Big Eyes

How I made myself Keane

Amy Adams hadn’t wanted to take the role of artist Margaret Keane, because she’d had enough of playing victims. But then she had a daughter, and saw the painter in a new light
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Parting view of Ofcom chief... we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
A look back at fashion in 2014: Wear in review

Wear in review

A look back at fashion in 2014
Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015. Might just one of them happen?

Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015

Might just one of them happen?
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?