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Berbatov going nowhere, insists Ferguson

Sir Alex Ferguson insists Manchester United have no intention of selling Dimitar Berbatov this summer.

The Bulgarian striker has struggled to make an impact at Old Trafford following his €35.45m move from Tottenham in August 2008, scoring just 26 goals in two seasons.

But Ferguson has no plans to offload the "fantastic" 29-year-old.

"No, no, definitely not," he said.

"That's a problem with a club like United - there's expectation and the media attention is always there.

"There's speculation every year - some summers I'm signing 100 players. You've got to live with that sort of media hype about the club. There's been a bit about Berbatov in terms of his future but we know he's a good player.

"He's a fantastic footballer and he'll be with us next year."

Berbatov will, therefore, be part of the Red Devils' squad which tours Canada and the United States in July.

United's eight World Cup stars will be given a break after their exploits in South Africa. They will not travel to North America and Ferguson has indicated they could miss the start of the new Barclays Premier League season.

Speaking to Toronto radio station FAN 590, he said: "The players who will be going on the tour, the big names, the established names from Manchester United over the last 20 years - (Paul) Scholes, (Gary) Neville, (Ryan) Giggs - will all be there, (Edwin) Van der Sar, Berbatov, (Darren) Fletcher, (John) O'Shea... all these players. We're bringing a very strong squad.

"My intention anyway is to start the season with the squad I'm bringing on tour because the World Cup can be a draining experience for players - it's the biggest tournament of their lives. They need rest.

"We'll give all the players a 28-day rest after their last game so we intend to start the season without them."

Ferguson also praised the Glazer family, who own the club, for the constant support despite much criticism.

"They've been great owners," he said. "They have supported me every way I've asked them.

"There's no other reason to think they haven't supported me. If you look at any time I've wanted a player they've provided the money; if you look at what we've done this season - and people don't recognise this - we've spent over €23m on young players.

"We've bought Chris Smalling, Mame Diouf and Javier Hernandez.

"People don't realise how we're structured and how we see our future of the club. We've always based it on a nucleus and foundation of young players developing in the club."

The demand for instant success, though, and the "greed" of foreign owners makes Ferguson believe a salary cap will not be introduced in football any time soon.

"I don't think so," he said. "This has been talked about for many, many years. There must be concern about the level of salaries in the game.

"But, football is worldwide game and there's a lot of greed, particularly with the types of owners that come into the game - Russians, Americans, Middle-East owners.

"Salary caps will not come into their domain in the sense of the wealth they have and what they can do with that wealth.

"They can attract the best players through that wealth and I just don't see that salary caps come into their area of thinking."

Meanwhile, Ferguson is backing old friend Jose Mourinho to guide Inter Milan to victory in tomorrow's Champions League final against Bayern Munich at the Bernabeu.

He still has a feeling of regret, though, that Inter find themselves up against Bayern rather than his United side.

"We should have been in that final," he said, before recalling his team's quarter-final exit to the Bavarians and in particular the dismissal of Rafael da Silva.

"We murdered Bayern Munich and just didn't have the luck on the night and had a terrible refereeing decision against us in the game that changed the whole course of it.

"If you look at Bayern in all the games this season, they have carried a bit of luck. Maybe their name's on the cup.

"But, make no mistake - Inter are the better team. Inter are a very, very good team. Mourinho has changed that whole club around.

"I think they are the best team. They can win it but Bayern are carrying luck and you just worry about that."

© Press Association