Manchester United are in danger of following in Liverpool’s footsteps, Dimitar Berbatov has warned, with it feared that a long wait for Premier League title glory is stretching out in front of the Red Devils.
Those at Old Trafford boast 13 top-flight crowns in the modern era, with all of those secured under the guidance of Sir Alex Ferguson.
Since a legendary coach walked away in 2013, United have got nowhere near adding to their impressive collection.
Serious regression has taken the club in an alarming direction, with sixth place the best Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side could muster in 2018-19.
Inconsistency has the Red Devils a long way off the pace again this term, with Berbatov admitting that a barren spell similar to that endured by arch-rivals at Anfield could lie in store.
The former United striker told Betfair: “It is frustrating and difficult for me to admit that United are so far behind Manchester City and Liverpool.
“When it comes to playing the game, you can see how confident and calm on the ball they both are, they know how to play and sometimes United don't have that and they suffer because of that.
“I hope that Manchester United don't end up like Liverpool and wait at least 29 years for the title. Six years is a long time to wait to win a title for a team like Manchester United.
“When you get into that spiral you are going to start slowly losing your DNA, look at Liverpool and all those years, you don't want that. Sure, Liverpool are playing better now, but it has taken them so long to get to this point now where they are playing great football. United need to find that winning formula as soon as possible.”
Berbatov feels the right approach is being taken by United, as they show faith in youth and the stars of tomorrow, but waiting for them to deliver could be a long process.
The Bulgarian added: “It is good to see that they are giving chances to young players, Scott McTominay was excellent against Arsenal, you can see that he is starting to command the midfield and he scored a great goal, an exquisite finish, I could never score a goal like that. It was unbelievable.
“At the same time, you can see that some of the players are still young and naive in some situations. In that case, they need the experienced players with them. From the bench or on the training ground they can teach them valuable lessons and teach them how to deal with different situations in games.
“To put so much pressure on the young players all at once is not so good and that's why they need some of the senior members of the squad to step up and help them get back to winning.”
United will be in Europa League action against AZ Alkmaar on Thursday, before heading into the next international break on the back of a trip to Newcastle.
They are then due to face Liverpool at Old Trafford on October 20.