Last year at this time, Britney Spears was proceeding full-force in her downward spiral and facing public embarrassment after a less-than-stellar “comeback” performance at the Video Music Awards. This year, the chart-topping pop princess walked away from the same ceremony with three Moonman awards and plans for a full-length LP. What more could Britney want? Well, how about an extensive 2009 world tour?

In a September 29 interview on New York radio station Z100, pop’s former golden girl announced that she plans to complete her comeback with an extensive itinerary of live performances. According to published reports, the rebounding singer said she would hit the road “definitely next year” and book dates “probably around the world.”

Spears called into the morning show to promote her new single, “Womanizer,” which made its radio debut on the same station last week. The track hails from the forthcoming “Circus,” set for a December 2 release that also marks the singer’s 27th birthday.

“I cut ‘Circus’ two weeks ago,” Spears said in the interview. “I’ve been working on this album for, like, six months now.”

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After a particularly rough run in the tabloids last year, the young star tried to bounce back with the October 2007 release “Blackout,” a follow-up to 2003’s multiplatinum “In the Zone.” Spears even performed the single “Gimme More” at the VMAs, but was roundly criticized for her unfit appearance and bumbling moves during the ceremony’s opening routine. David Willis of the BBC said in a review that the performance would “go down in the history books as being one of the worst to grace the MTV Awards.”

The panned performance was in sharp contrast to the praise her album received from critics and fans, earning 3.5 out of 5 stars from Rolling Stone and Allmusic. However, Spears’s tabloid persona sullied her musical accomplishments as she continued a self-destructive pattern and battled for visitation rights for her two young sons. As a reviewer at Pitchfork Media phrased it, “However good the music on the record is, and most critics agree it’s pretty good, surely this poor half-there creature can’t have had much to do with it?”

As of late, though, Spears is on the path to reclaiming her pop princess crown. At the 2008 VMAs, the singer was well-behaved and soft-spoken, keeping her acceptance speeches short and sweet as she picked up Moonmen statues for Best Female Video, Best Pop Video and Video of the Year. Depending on how “Circus” fares critically and how the potential 2009 tour progresses, Spears could finally achieve her long-awaited career comeback.