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Soccer-Berbatov joins Monaco on loan from Fulham


(Adds Abdernnour signing)

PARIS, Jan 31 (Reuters) - Monaco made a late transfer deadline-day move to cover for Radamel Falcao's long-term injury absence by signing striker Dimitar Berbatov on loan from English Premier League strugglers Fulham on Friday.

The 33-year-old Bulgarian has joined the Ligue 1 title contenders until the end of the season and will wear the number 15 shirt, Monaco announced on their website (

"I'm happy, excited and a little nervous I have to say. I look forward to starting training with my new team mates and opening a new chapter in my career," said Berbatov.

The former Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur forward retired from international football in 2010 after scoring 49 goals in 79 matches for Bulgaria.

Berbatov has netted four times in 18 league games this season with Fulham who are second from bottom.

Monaco, six points behind leaders Paris St Germain, play their game in hand at 10th-placed Lorient on Saturday.

Colombia striker Falcao is expected to be out for the rest of the season with damaged knee ligaments.

Monaco also signed Tunisia centre back Aymen Abdennour on loan from Toulouse with an option for a permanent deal.

The 24-year-old, who has 31 caps, is widely regarded as one of the most reliable defenders in Ligue 1. (Reporting by Gregory Blachier; editing by Tony Jimenez)

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