The Bulgarian would almost instantly polarise opinion among the United faithful, many of whom were looking for the new Eric Cantona.
His relatively modest goal return of 14 and 12 respectively in his first two seasons as a Red Devil did little to help his cause, and neither did his languid style.
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However, Berbatov showed signs of becoming the type of centre-forward that the club yearned for when he opened up the 2010-11 campaign by scoring seven goals in his first six outings.
That was followed by 10 matches without a goal, though, as the doubts once again rose to the surface, before Blackburn Rovers visited Old Trafford three years ago today.
Berbatov had found the net in United's 2-0 victory over the Lancashire outfit during the previous campaign and it took him just two minutes to break the deadlock this time around. Wayne Rooney flicked a Nani cross in the striker's path and he turned the ball beyond Paul Robinson.
Park Ji-Sung doubled United's lead soon after, before Berbatov claimed his second of the afternoon in the 27th minute. Pascal Chimbonda tried to play a pass back to his keeper, but only succeeded in picking out the United frontman, who beat Robinson with a powerful strike.
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He completed his hat-trick two minutes after the restart when he lifted Nani's cross into the roof of the net and then the Portuguese winger turned scorer just 60 seconds later as he curled the ball into the far corner.
Berbatov netted his fourth and United's sixth goal with 62 minutes on the clock. Rafael da Silva's cross was met by Park, only for the South Korean's shot to be blocked. The rebound dropped kindly for Berbatov, though, who scored from close range.
He then completed United's scoring - their seventh - with 20 minutes remaining by squeezing the ball in from a narrow angle.
Christopher Samba blotted United's copybook ever so slightly when he headed in a consolation in the 83rd minute, but the contest belonged to Berbatov. He became only the fourth player after Andy Cole, Alan Shearer and Jermain Defoe to score five goals in a Premier League encounter and was also the first foreigner to achieve the feat.