When a talented player like Dimitar Berbatov is relegated to playing just 12 league games for a club in a season, it's time for both sides to move on.
Berbatov wrote on his Facebook page:
"The truth is I love this club, but I am not going to be useful to anyone if I am not playing. And I want to play, I want to help, but for unknown reasons it's not going to happen, or my chances will be limited, so it's better for everyone if we say goodbye."
I can understand Berbatov's stance. Despite playing in 12 Premier League games last season, he still scored seven goals. You will remember he scored 20 goals in 24 starts for United in 2010-2011.
Berbatov, 31, is getting older, but he's still a very productive player when he's on the pitch. He still exhibits strong goal scoring ability, combined with his creativity and ball control, and plenty of clubs wouldn't mind him starting for them.
Obviously, United would like to keep Berbatov for depth behind Wayne Rooney, Javier Hernandez and Danny Welbeck, but there's no use keeping a player of his caliber stashed on the bench and risk him growing less motivated.
With the $5 million United could get for Berbatov, it helps them a bit financially down the line—and he will be happier, too. Although it would surely be a sentimental parting, it's a win-win situation for both parties at this point.
There is not much use for Berbatov at Old Trafford right now, given the team's current construction. There comes a time when you either have to start a talented veteran like Berbatov, or cut him loose.