The official website for European football

Bulgaria battle back to hold Italy

Published: Friday 7 September 2012, 23.21CET
Bulgaria 2-2 Italy
In front and then behind against the UEFA EURO 2012 runners-up, Bulgaria eventually emerged with a point courtesy of Georgi Milanov.
Bulgaria battle back to hold Italy
Stanislav Manolev celebrates after putting Bulgaria ahead ©Getty Images
Published: Friday 7 September 2012, 23.21CET

Bulgaria battle back to hold Italy

Bulgaria 2-2 Italy
In front and then behind against the UEFA EURO 2012 runners-up, Bulgaria eventually emerged with a point courtesy of Georgi Milanov.

UEFA EURO 2012 runners-up Italy are still searching for a first ever win in Bulgaria after being held to a 2-2 draw in Sofia.

Having lost twice and drawn twice on their previous visits to Bulgaria, the Azzurri looked set for more of the same when they went behind to Stanislav Manolev's goal on the half-hour. They were in front before the break, though, Pablo Osvaldo scoring twice, but Georgi Milanov's second-half equaliser meant both teams had to settle for a share of the spoils in their FIFA World Cup qualifying Group B opener.

The hosts were good value for a point, Manolev's low shot leaving Gianluigi Buffon with no chance to give them the lead. Cesare Prandelli's side hit back almost immediately, however, and were ahead inside ten minutes. Osvaldo latched on to Claudio Marchiso's header and slotted past Nikolay Mihaylov to equalise, before rising to meet Emanuele Giaccherini's cross via a deflection off Ivan Ivanov to complete the turnaround.

Luboslav Penev's side were not shy about seeking an equaliser but did not take the initiative until Ilian Micanski's 61st-minute introduction. Scorer of the winning goal against the Netherlands and Cyrprus in friendlies earlier this year, Micanski once again proved the joker in the pack. It was the 1. FC Kaiserslautern striker who broke down the right and found Milanov, who finished with aplomb.

Manolev and Mattia Destro missed late chances to win it for their respective sides, as honours ended even. Italy host Malta on Tuesday, while Bulgaria welcome Armenia to Sofia.

Last updated: 08/05/14 8.44CET

Related information

Team profiles
Related match

http://www.uefa.com/worldcup/season=2014/matches/round=2000294/match=2008552/postmatch/report/index.html#bulgaria+battle+back+hold+italy

UEFA.com features

How Guardiola made his mark at Barcelona
  • How Guardiola made his mark at Barcelona
  • Classic UEFA Champions League semi-finals
  • How Juventus got back to the top
  • Futre on futsal finals in Lisbon
  • 2002 Futsal Cup final: Where it all began
  • Sporting stalwart Benedito opens up
  • Greatest UEFA Champions League comebacks
  • Prudnikov wants Dina to make history again
  • Kairat's Joan targets trophy again
  • Snap shot: Ajax overturn 3-1 first-leg defeat
1 of 10
 
  • © 1998-2015 UEFA. All rights reserved.
  • The UEFA word, the UEFA logo and all marks related to UEFA competitions, are protected by trade marks and/or copyright of UEFA. No use for commercial purposes may be made of such trade marks. Use of UEFA.com signifies your agreement to the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.