DIMITAR Berbatov will spend the next eight months sipping absinthe from a jade goblet after completing his 90 minutes of effort for the season.
The Bulgarian striker paused from writing his latest tome of symbolist poetry to score a hat-trick against Liverpool, which he later dedicated to the 12 catamites currently residing in his Moroccan summer home.
Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson said: “The lad’s done well, especially when you consider he’d been awake for the last three days arguing about the films of Jean Cocteau with a gang of Turkish sailors.
“While he has cut down on the Gauloises, he did nearly poke Nani’s eye out with his alabaster cigarette holder in training the other week going for a header.”
Many fans criticised the decision to sign the Bulgarian at the age of 27, especially after he published his 2008 art manifesto in Berlin that insisted true greatness could only be achieved by dying of consumption at the age of 30 while clutching a battered copy of Crime and Punishment in your nicotine-stained fingers.
But the striker made history yesterday, becoming the first Nobel literature laureate to score a hat-trick against Liverpool since Herman Hesse turned out for Preston North End in 1946.
Berbatov said: “The dichotomy for the modern player lies in the tension between the needs of the team and the ambition of the individual. Do I strike the ball or does the ball strike what I perceive to be me?”
He added: “So when O Shea’s knocked it over, I’ve just outjumped big Jamie Carra at the far stick and gave it the beans into the back of the net.
“‘Foot’ ball is, is it not, a beautiful, terrible, mesmersing unicorn. To quote Peter Beardsley.”