Berbatov’s Big Hero – Alan Shearer

The Sun has a great article out today on Spurs great striker Dimitar Berbatov who it turns out grew up worshiping Alan Shearer — and slept in the No 9 Newcastle shirt.

Berbatov was given the number 9 Newcastle United shirt for his 18th birthday and ended up sleeping in it.

Apparently that’s why he chose the number 9 shirt when he moved to Tottenham.


Dimitar Berbatov – with that famous number 9 Newcastle shirt

The 26 year old Bulgarian will have the opportunity on Monday evening to feel the atmosphere his idol Big Al felt when he played for Newcastle United. But we’ll need to make sure he doesn’t replicate what Big Al kept doing – scoring goals. Shearer scored 206 goals for Newcastle United in his 10 years at the club and is one of the best players ever to wear a Newcastle shirt. The fact that Alan was born and raised in Gosforth doesn’t hurt the image either.

Dimitar’s mother is a former champion handball player, and recalled how the number 9 Alan Shearer shirt became her son’s prized possession.

His mother said:

“Dimitar wore this shirt all the time.” “He even used to sleep in his Newcastle shirt! It’s that special to him.”

“Dimitar told me it was his dream to play for Newcastle United one day and wear the same shirt as Alan Shearer, who is my son’s hero.”

“Shearer was a major inspiration for him to work hard for himself and the team. He liked the fact that Alan Shearer scored goals but was not a selfish player.”

“Dimitar thinks this shirt may even have been a sign he was meant to play in England.”

Dimitar’s father was also a footballer and played striker CSKA Sofia. But his son solidly supported the Magpies and not Sofia when he was growing up. It’s rumored that Dimitar even has Alan’s famous pre-match meal of chicken and beans.

Dimitar’s school friend Mario Bekov has known Berbatov for 20 years and says his pal was just obsessed with Shearer.

He said:

“Dimitar never missed a Newcastle game when it was on television. And Shearer was up there with Pele as a God for him.”

Stefan Damianov is another former pal who says his pal considered himself an honorary Geordie as he followed Newcastle and grew up in a mining region of Blagoevgrad, just like the north east area.

Stefan said:

“People in this part of Bulgaria like the Newcastle team especially and identify themselves with the football-mad culture of the people there and loyalty to the team.”

There’s no doubt Berbatov is a great player and his first season in the Premiership was very successful. Things have been harder for him this season and he has just 2 goals after 9 games, but he will be a constant danger to Newcastle on Monday night, because of his undoubted class.

His mum added:

“Dimitar has told me he’s hungry to win cups and wants to play in the Champions League in the next few years.”

Well there’s one thing that is clear and that is his parents should be very proud of their son who has done really well in England in the last year or so. It’s just a pity that Dimitar didn’t get on the phone for a trial with Newcastle United when he was 18 years old in 1999. But then again maybe he did, but Ruud Gullit answered it   😀

Comments welcome.

17 comments so far

  • Whitey

    Oct 20, 2007 at 11:33 AM

    Comment #1

    Nice Story, nice to hear that Shearer has been a massive influence for many people not just English people. I wish Berbatov could be a Newcastle player because he is just a fantastic player.

  • Shane Coghlan

    Oct 20, 2007 at 11:36 AM

    Comment #2

    Sign him up!!!

  • nightfall

    Oct 20, 2007 at 11:36 AM

    Comment #3

    let’s just sell shola and owen and get berbatov… i think he’d be a better partner to smith and oba when viduka is gone…

  • ToonKing

    Oct 20, 2007 at 12:11 PM

    Comment #4

    Really nice article, i admit i wouldn’t mind having him in the squad, maybe next summer, when Viduka will be 33 allready we can get him. Imagine a Berbatov and Owen partnership……

    Get him Sam.

  • Bill f

    Oct 20, 2007 at 12:31 PM

    Comment #5

    Well, lets help push Spurs into the championship, then he might be avavilable. 🙂

  • Bill f

    Oct 20, 2007 at 12:31 PM

    Comment #6


  • Brisbane Mag

    Oct 20, 2007 at 1:48 PM

    Comment #7

    Berbatov is a very god player but we have to stop him and his buddies on Monday. A Newcastle win is essential……

    Newcastle 3; Spurs 2…….

  • d

    Oct 20, 2007 at 1:56 PM

    Comment #8

    when Viduka’s contract is out mayb we can replace him with barba

  • Hadrian

    Oct 20, 2007 at 2:13 PM

    Comment #9

    this is why shearer is a great ambasador for the club and why i wouldnt disagree with him managing one day .
    there must be loads of players who followed shearer similar to berbatov ,
    im pretty certain we only got owen thanks to alan’s words in his ear .
    wonder if messi rated shearer ? think he’d come to the toon ?? 😀

  • iain

    Oct 20, 2007 at 3:56 PM

    Comment #10

    i think a round of berbatov is a geordie chants on monday night is called for.

    ive certainly heard the rumours b4 that berba was nufc mad, but finally the proof is there.

    id swap any of our strikers for berbatov as his team play would improve the goal tallies of all the other strikers. look what hes done for robbie keane since they have played together at spurs. and he scores as manyif not more as martins and more than smith/shola put together.

  • Bill f

    Oct 20, 2007 at 4:15 PM

    Comment #11

    d// Why wait?

  • Joe

    Oct 20, 2007 at 4:38 PM

    Comment #12

    Gan for him in January. He would come guaranteed. We have the money right? We want big players right. Get him in January and tell him he’ll get the number 9 next season. Sorted.

  • leo

    Oct 20, 2007 at 10:07 PM

    Comment #13

    imagine get rid of ameobi

    and viduka at the end of the season

    sign berbatov and gudjohnsen

    owen martins

    berbatov gudjohnsen

    baheng carroll

    sign deco and edmilson and a right winger.

    come on ashley, get ur cheque book out

  • Hugo

    Oct 21, 2007 at 11:20 AM

    Comment #14

    “Gan for him in January. He would come guaranteed. We have the money right? We want big players right. Get him in January and tell him he’ll get the number 9 next season. Sorted”

    Why, exactly, would he come to Newcastle? (no disrespect to Newcastle here) Idolising a former player is one thing, but if Berbatov decides to move from Tottenham (where he has repeatedly stated his happiness), surely it’ll be to a Champions League club somewhere round the world?

    Nice for you to dream though… just like I can dream about Spurs getting that Champions League place and stopping him from leaving. Ahh.

  • Dragoner

    Oct 21, 2007 at 7:34 PM

    Comment #15

    forget champions league, spurs should be dreaming of top 10 finish lol

  • NatsirtMAG

    Oct 23, 2007 at 8:52 PM

    Comment #16

    Sign him up Sam we need players who wanna play for the TOON and viduka’s not getting any younger Come on Mike Ashley!!!! At least make an inquiry in Jan please

  • StevieA

    Nov 6, 2007 at 2:33 PM

    Comment #17

    He supports Newcastle United and he looked pissed that he didn’t start against us. I say sign him in January!

    He is the kind of striker we need and would be an ideal replacement for Viduka.


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