Manchester United forward Dimitar Berbatov has hit back at allegations he doesn't care enough about playing for the Premier League champions.
The jury is still out on the Bulgarian after an underwhelming first season at Old Trafford following his £30.75 million pounds transfer from Tottenham. Berbatov, 28, has infuriated fans with some lacklustre displays and a perceived lack of fight when the team are struggling.
Although United boss Sir Alex Ferguson has supported Berbatov in public, he is not certain to start Wednesday's UEFA Champions League final against Barcelona. Berbatov has grown tired of the jibes and is adamant he is fully committed to the United cause.
"I know people sometimes think I don't care. Trust me. I do," he said. "I get frustrated and if I don't play well I am very disappointed. People should not just look at my face and make an assessment about me, depending on what it shows."
Ferguson pursued Berbatov for well over 12 months, believing the former Spurs star could add an ingredient missing from his team by being able to unlock the tightest of defences in the most difficult of games. A tally of 14 goals and an equal number of assists suggests Berbatov has added guile to the United attack.
Yet as the season has reached its dramatic conclusion, he has been gently eased out of the United starting line-up and Berbatov concedes there is still room for improvement in the quality of his performances if not the effort. "I know what I have done. And I know I can do a lot more," he said.
"I can improve because I didn't produce 100 per cent in some of the games I have played since I came to the club. I still get nervous. I play for the biggest club in the world. The nerves are always there.
"Barcelona will give us a tough match but every game is like that for us. The opposition think: 'We are playing against Manchester United, we are going to give it everything'. We don't expect anything else."