Dimitar Berbatov has revealed he told his agent to “f**k off” when he was told of Manchester City’s interest in signing him in 2008.
The Bulgarian moved from Tottenham to Manchester United on one of the most intense deadline days in recent memory, sealing a £30 million ($38m) move with minutes to spare.
City, of course, were the subject of a takeover on the same day, and amazingly swooped to sign Robinho from under the noses of Chelsea.
The Blues were not satisfied with stopping there, however, and launched a bid to steal Berbatov away too.
Spurs reported United to the Football Association due to the nature of their pursuit of the striker, and reports at the time claimed that selling Berbatov to City would have been more palatable for the London club.
The side made an offer in excess of United’s, reported to be £34m ($43m), but Berbatov was not interested, and told his agent as much!
Speaking to FourFourTwo regarding City’s interest, he said: “I don’t think it was that close, to be honest. My agent told me about some interest but I said, ‘Don’t even bother mentioning anyone else, I’m going to Man United,’ because of the history, the players, the tradition, everything.
“I think it was the night before City signed Robinho from Real Madrid and my agent said, ‘Berba, there’s another team in for you’. I said, ‘F*ck off, we’re going to Man United’. He said, ‘But they’ll give you more money!’
“It’s not all about the money sometimes, though. I was like a horse with blinkers. For me it was the right decision because going to the top of the mountain was my dream, especially when you come from Eastern Europe, from a small town, and no one’s done it before you. It was a great feeling.”
Berbatov left a Spurs side who had not won any of their opening three games, and was widely regarded as a pariah among the club’s fans.
However, he maintains that he was merely “following his path”.
“It’s difficult,” he added. “You see it all the time with players moving clubs. In my case it was me simply following my path, because ever since I was a small boy, I’d always imagined playing for the biggest club in the world.
“When that moment arrived I know a lot of people were angry with my choice, but I needed to follow my path.”
Berbatov won two Premier League titles during his time at United, as well as the League Cup and the Club World Cup.
The Bulgarian scored 56 goals during his time at Old Trafford, leaving for Fulham in 2012. Since that move, he has played for Monaco, PAOK and Kerala Blasters. He won 78 caps for his country.