PFC Levski Sofia star Georgi Ivanov has been voted Bulgarian Footballer of the Year for the second time in a row.
The striker, who also won Forward of the Year, was honoured after coming top in a vote of 89 sports journalists from across Bulgaria. Second place went to Scottish-based midfield player Stilian Petrov, of Celtic FC, while third went to Bayer 04 Leverkusen’s Dimitar Berbatov.
Ten more years
Despite winning, Ivanov said he felt he still had plenty to prove. “I am not the kind of person who will stop performing at his best after winning two top awards,” he said. “I have ambitions and my goal is to win this award for the third time next year. In fact, I want to be at the top for ten more years,” he added as he received the top prize from legendary Bulgarian goalkeeper Bobby Mihailov at a ceremony in Sofia.
Stilian deserved to win
Ivanov also said that others deserved the honor more than he did. “If I have to be honest, I didn’t expect to win this award,” he said. “My personal top three was Stilian Petrov, Dimitar Berbatov and Krassimir Balakov. All three of them had great seasons and I think that Stilian really deserved to win. But I can only be proud that the journalists voted me best footballer.”
The Goalkeeper of the Year award went to Istanbulspor AS’s Zdravko Zdravkov while youngster Zhivko Zhelev, from PFC Litex Lovech, won the best defender award. Petrov made up for just missing out on the top prize by winning the Midfielder of the Year award while Litex also had the honour of seeing Zoran Jankovic win the best foreign player prize.
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