Bulgaria Calls on World Cup 94 Spirit for Italy Qualifier
Bulgaria has called on the spirit of their victory at the Parc des Princes against France in 1993 to help them win against Italy in a crucial 2010 World Cup Quailfier on Wednesday.
The Bulgarian national football team sporting director, Nasko Sirakov, turned to the memory of one of Bulgaria's greatest wins to try to drum up confidence ahead of the must win game against Italy in Turin on Wednesday evening at 21:30.
"We need a new Saint Emil," Sirakov told reporters late Tuesday, referring to Emil Kostadinov's last-minute strike that gave Bulgaria a 2-1 win over France to clinch a place at the 1994 World Cup finals in the U.S. The dramatic late goal eliminated Gerard Houllier's France at the 1994 World Cup qualifying stage, while Bulgaria went on to reach the semi-finals after beating Germany in the last eight.
Bulgaria, who beat Montengro 4-1 on Saturday, need another victory to realistically keep their World Cup hopes alive.
Stanimir Stoilov's men are third in Group Eight with 11 points behind Italy, who are top on 17 also after seven matches. Ireland are second with 16 points from eight games.
Bulgaria will miss suspended midfielder Dimitar Telkiyski but defender Zhivko Milanov, still recovering from a knee injury, flew to Italy hoping to play at the Stadio Olimpico.
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