Bulgaria have been forced to think again for their friendly against Lithuania next week after key striker Svetoslav Todorov suffered a major injury.
Todorov, a key man to Bulgarian hopes of reaching UEFA EURO 2004™ in Portugal next summer, was hurt during training with his English Premiership club Portsmouth FC on Wednesday. His club manager Harry Redknapp reportedly said today that the 24-year-old would be out for the rest of the season after damaging knee ligaments.
Trio also missing
Bulgaria coach Plamen Markov has also lost goalkeeper Zdravko Zdravkov for the friendly in Sofia after he had a jaw operation earlier this week. Also missing are unfit midfield players Milen Petkov of AEK Athens FC and FC Dynamo Kyiv's Georgi Peev.
Next Wednesday's match will form part of Bulgaria's preparations for their home qualifier against Estonia on 6 September. Bulgaria lead the way in Group 8 with eleven points from five matches. After the Estonia match, Bulgaria finish their campaign away in Andorra and Croatia.
Ivankov, Kolev, Stankov, Stoyanov, Kirilov, Zhelev, Pazhin, Krstev, Petkov, Borimirov, Yanchev, Dimitrov, S Petrov, Hristov, Jankovic, M Petrov, Manchev, Chilikov, Berbatov.
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