Bulgarian Football Legend Hristo Stoichkov Celebrates 50th Anniversary

Sports | February 8, 2016, Monday // 16:10
Bulgaria: Bulgarian Football Legend Hristo Stoichkov Celebrates 50th Anniversary File photo

Bulgarian football legend Hristo Stoichkov is celebrating his 50th anniversary on Monday.

Stoichkov, known by his nickname the Dagger, is often identified as the greatest Bulgarian football player ever, being the only Bulgarian awarded a Ballon d'Or and the only one to lift the Champions League trophy.

Apart from the Champions League won with Barcelona in 1992, Stoichkov also holds three Bulgarian championship titles, four Bulgarian Cups, five La Liga titles, one Copa del Rey.

Apart from the Ballon d'Or awarded in 1994, Stoichkov also won a European Golden Shoe in 1990.

Stoichkov was part of Bulgaria's golden football generation of the 1990s which finished fourth at the 1994 World Cup, with the Dagger becoming the joint top goalscorer of the tournament.

He was part of Barcelona's “Dream Team” under the guidance of Johan Cruyff.

Stoichkov started his professional career at Hebros and played for CSKA Sofia, Barcelona, Parma, Al-Nassr, Kashiwa Reysol, Chicago Fire and D.C. United.

He was also a coach of the Bulgarian men's national team, Celta Vigo, Mamelodi Sundowns, Litex and CSKA.

Stoichkov will celebrate his 50th anniversary with a great spectacle entitled “50 years number 8” (after Stoichkov's jersey number).

The show will take place at the Vasil Levski National Stadium in Sofia on May 20, bringing together some of the greatest football stars of the recent past and the present.

So far, a total of five Bulgarian and 21 international football players have confirmed their participation in the show.

The first to confirm was Argentinian legend Diego Maradona, followed by numerous stars from Europe, the Balkans and Latin America.

Apart from Maradona, the other representatives from Latin America are goalkeepers Jorge Campos (Mexico) and Jose Luis Chilavert (Paraguay), Brazilian Romario, Argentinian Juan Roman Riquelme, Colombians Carlos Valderrama and Diego Gutierrez and Chilean Ivan Zamorano.

The Balkans will be represented by Romanians Gheorghe Hagi and Gheorghe Popescu, Croatians Davor Suker and Zvonimir Boban as well as Predrag Mijatovic and Dejan Savicevic from Montenegro.

Five players from Bulgaria's golden football generation of the 1990s have also confirmed their participation - Nasko Sirakov, Yordan Letchkov, Lyuboslav Penev, Krasimir Balakov and Emil Kostadinov.

Other Europeans to take part in the show are Italians Daniele Massaro, Gianfranco Zola and Antonio Benarrivo and Piotr Nowak from Poland.

Tickets for the show can be purchased in the network of Eventim (online at eventim.bg), with the prices ranging from BGN 18.88 to BGN 88.88 depending on the seating arrangement.

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Tags: Bulgaria, football, Hristo Stoichkov, anniversary, Vasil Levski National Stadium, sofia, Ballon d'Or, European Golden Shoe, 1994 World Cup, Champions League, CSKA, Barcelona, Parma, Johan Cruyff, Lothar Matthaus, Roberto Baggio, Jean-Pierre Papin, Diego Maradona, Romario, Jorge Campos, Jose Luis Chilavert, Juan Roman Riquelme, Carlos Valderrama, Ivan Zamorano, Gheorghe Hagi, Gheorghe Popescu, Davor Suker, Zvonimir Boban, Predraj Mijatovic, Dejan Savicevic, Nasko Sirakov, Yordan Letchkov, Lyuboslav Penev, Krasimir Balakov, Emil Kostadinov, Daniele Massaro, Gianfranco Zola, Antonio Benarrivo, Piotr Nowak, Diego Gutierrez
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