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Hey, folks, strap yourselves in for the most dramatic update so far! Starting up with league champions CSKA Sofia - due to financial troubles they were kicked out of the CL qualifiers and they had t

Re: Bulgarian Update Valentin Galev [74 rated, 25yo] is still up for a major increase, since he's still the first choice keeper at Loko Sofia, even though they also got Loko Mezdra's Levashki during

Re: Bulgarian Update Last Christmas, when Anton Ognyanov just signed for Levski, he suffered a broken leg after a nasty challenge. He's being rated at 77 only right now, so that makes him a coup, as

Re: Bulgarian Update

You're welcome :)

Anyways, Vladimir MANCHEV [31yo, rated 82, striker] signed a short-term contract with CSKA Sofia and quickly fitted in by scoring twice in the 2:1 win over Chernomorets.

Manchev is hopeful of a transfer abroad, so he only agreed to stay with the Reds until the winter break. It is very likely that he'll get picked up by a team in the Russian league, so I think there is a chance for the Pazardzhik born striker to become a high-rated player (so something like Kushev in Amkar). Though, right now it would be a gamble to buy Vladimir.

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Re: Bulgarian Update

Being close to the winter break now, I'm starting with a detailed report on all teams in the Bulgarian league...

Starting off with my favorites Levski Sofia:

Georgi Petkov [85 rated, 32yo, GK]

6 games, 540 minutes

He's been ever present this season. With so much **** going around Levski and Bulgarian football as whole, he still manages to pull off amazing performances and keep his game at a top European level. But words are futile - I think the videos speak best for Petkov's ability.

Qualifiers 2010: Georgia - Bulgaria or "Georgia - Petkov"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ltrmMcBTNzs

Rating increase to 87

Daniel Kiss [81 rated, 24yo, GK]

3 games, 270 minutes

In Levski's history, I think we always failed with foreign keepers. The Slovak came to provide cover for Petkov in the European tournaments when he was injured, but whenever Kiss appeared on the field, he was very poor. He's definetly going back to Slovakia to just being a back up keeper.

Rating decrease to 80

Bozhidar Mitrev [76 rated, 21yo, GK]

After getting back from a serious injury, he hasn't had any chances to come back in regular football, but when Petkov leaves the club at the winter break, it will be a choice between Mitrev and Dimitrov for the N1 position. Even though he's yet to make an appearance this season, do not discard him.

Rating to stay at 76

Tsvetan Dimitrov (74 rated, 21yo, GK]

2 games, 180 minutes

After appearing in the first league game against Vihren (1:0 loss, goal coming from a penalty), he had another chance to play last night against high-flying Chernomorets (2:2 draw). In the first half Levski were walking over Chernomorets and led by 2:0, but in the 2nd half it was the other way around and only Dimitrov's saves prevented a win for The Sharks. Good talent with plenty of potential, very likely the N1 choice after Petkov leaves.

Rating increase to 76

Lucio Wagner [86 rated, 32yo, LB/LM]

6 games, 540 minutes

He's been caught up with the averageness of the whole team, but he keeps being present for both Levski and the Bulgarian national team.

Rating to stay at 86

Veselin Minev [82 rated, 28yo, LB]

5 games, 410 minutes

With Lucio's injuries, Minev had his fair share of playing time but he's not been a player who stands out - with over- or under- performance. Could get an increase by one, but IMO he'd likely stay at his rating.

Rating to stay at 82

Zhivko Milanov [85 rated, 24yo, RB]

9 games, 766 minutes

He's one of my favorites in the Levski team. Zhivko is probably the most molested right back I've seen. In a lot of times he takes the ball cleanly and then the outraged opponent fouls him - or Zhivko makes a forward run and again the opponents have no other chance to stop him, but foul the lad. Milanov is also a key part of the Bulgarian national team, playing all possible minutes from the 3 qualifiers so far (not to mention he's also being playing previously as well).

Rating increase to 86

David Bystron [85 rated, 25yo, CB/DM]

9 games, 810 minutes

It's funny how we pick our central defenders - we scout defensive midfielders for the occasion :rolleyes: In his career at Banik, Bystron was mainly a DM, but he only plays as a center back at Levski. He's slow, which sometimes causes us problems, but it's not his fault that he's played out of position.

Rating to stay at 85

Youssef Rabeh [85 rated, 23yo, CB]

8 games, 720 minutes

Absolute legend. A member of the Moroccan team and also the first name on the Levski team sheet. Dubbed "The Moroccan Bekenbauer" by fans in his country. Will probably leave to French side Nice at the winter break.

Rating increase to 86

Chakib Benzoukane [80 rated, 22yo, CB]

Very, very unlucky lad. After he overcame a 1 year injury, he suffered another one that took him out until the winter break. With Youssef surely leaving, Chakib can take the chance to establish himself once again in the first team. That is of course, if he doesn't suffer another injury.... (starting to doubt the competence of our medical staff)

Rating to decrease to 79

Simeon Ivanov [72 rated, 18yo, CB]

The strong and tall center back doesn't even feature on the Levski team sheet on the official page. The nicknamed "Materazzi" defender was demoted to the youth team.

Rating to stay at 72

Todor Stoev [70 rated, 20yo, CB]

It is just now that I notice he was overlooked on the last rating changes - he had 15 appearances for Vidima Rakovski and even though they relegated, he should have jumped off that 70 mark. Playing regularly for Levski's "B" team.

Rating change to 75

Viktor Genev [74 rated, 20yo, Def]

4 games, 185 minutes

Right now he is playing in the defense every time a gap opens. Hasn't been standing out and I dunno if there's more to come from him.

Rating increase to 76

Nikolay Dimitrov [85 rated, 21yo, LM/W]

8 games, 409 minutes

The lad has potential, but ever since those trials with Arsenal he's been below average and he's one of the most disliked players by the fanbase.

Rating decrease to 84

Eli Zizov [71 rated, 17yo, LM/AM]

Features heavily in friendlies and usually is a key player in those, but why he's not being given a fair chance yet is beyond me. Sadly there's no rating increase just on pure talent, but only on minutes...

Rating to stay at 71

Vladimir Gadzhev (80 rated, 21yo, RM/AM)

8 games, 367 minutes

Right now he's benched by Emil Velev, but it's not like he gave him a reason to with his performances. He has the potential to be 85+ rated player, I'm positive of that. Just not at the moment with this Levski team and specially, this inadequate coach...

Should get a positional change to CM/AM.

Rating increase to 82

Rachid Tiberkanine (78 rated, 23yo, RM/AM)

7 games, 368 minutes, 3 goals

Has adapted very well to the team and even though he gives good performances every time he's on the pitch, he's been overlooked sometimes by Velev, just like Gadzhev.

Rating increase to 82

Lachezar Baltanov (76 rated, 20yo, RM/AM) [should get a positional change to RB/RM)

6 games, 514 minutes

Definetly a great addition to your team. I didn't realize he played so oftenly until I saw the stats at pfl.bg. Hasn't been impressive, but after 3-4 years of just being "one of the hot prospects", he's finally given a chance.

Rating increase to 82-83

Georgi Sarmov (83 rated, 23yo, CM/LM)

5 games, 295 minutes

Didn't start the season due to injury, but now he's slowly getting back on track.

Rating to stay at 83

Miroslav Ivanov (83 rated, 26yo, CM)

10 games, 560 minutes

The labeled "Deco from Shumen" player definetly wins the competition "Who the fans hate most". The short playmaker is nothing but an average player who's only gonna be a star at a "B" group side like Shumen. Yet, he's been playing regularly under three Levski coaches now (Stanimir Stoilov, Ventzislav Vutzov and Emil Velev). Whole Bulgaria sees how inadequate Miroslav is and they don't?!

Rating to stay at 83 [due to the minutes I would say increase to 84, but not with the way he's been playing]

Daniel Borimirov (85 rated, 38yo, Director of Football)

Yes, he retired. Even though I informed SM about it, I guess they hold off to my words that he expressed a desire to play. But at this point it's never been so sure that he's never putting on the football boots again - he missed too much time of a player his age.

Darko Tasevski (84 rated, 24yo, AM/RM)

8 games, 535 minutes, 3 goals

Very inconstant performer. He can be a total disaster today and a midfield general tomorrow.

Rating to stay at 84

Maryan Ognyanov (76 rated, 20yo, AM/Wing)

1 game, 44 minutes

Poor lad. The goal against Chelsea and his numerous fights in night clubs are the only highlight of his career so far. It would be bad if the guy who scored the first ever goal for a Bulgarian club in the CL stages ends up as a bench player throughout his career.

Filho Ze Soares (83 rated, 25yo, W/F)

9 games, 704 minutes

One of the best players at the club. Does a good job at the right wing

Rating increase to 84

Natailton Joaozinho (82 rated, 19yo, Wing)

7 games, 548 minutes

After getting sent off against Lokomotiv Sofia, I think he got an injury which is preventing him to get back in the first team. Definetly a great talent.

Rating increase to 84

Georgi Hristov (85 rated, 23yo, Fwd)

10 games, 805 minutes, 5 goals

If only Georgi can overcome his nervous breakdown, he can be a Bulgaria national, not only Levski's top scorer. Right now he only provokes ironic laughter or cursing from the Levski fans, along with a phrase said by coach Velev after Hristov made yet another miss: "****, we ARE a joke!"

Rating decrease to 84

Enyo Krastovchev (83 rated, 24yo, Fwd)

3 games, 152 minutes

Average striker who's only good at "A" group level. Suffered a nasty injury lately which prevents him from playing.

Rating decrease to 82

Sales Jean Carlos (83 rated, 24yo, Fwd/AM)

1 game, 26 minutes, 1 goal

I have no idea what's wrong with him, but his misses make the fans compare him to Demba-Nyren, who's another striker who was great with other clubs, but completely pathetic with the Blues. IMO, a rating of 75 would be generous, but that would be biased.

Rating decrease to 81

Aleksandar Kirov (70 rated, 18yo, Fwd)

Demoted to the youth team.

Georgi Ivanov - Gonzo (84 rated, 32yo, CF)

8 games, 452 minutes, 1 goal

Gonzo has been a shadow of what he used to be before. Sure, he scored yet again in the derby and he became the Levski striker with most goals against CSKA (15, before he was tied with Nasko Sirakov, who has 14), but still the season is not only 2 games.

Rating decrease to 83

P.S.: the other team reports won't be as detailed as I don't watch other teams - mainly stats, but I hope they'll be helpful :)

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Re: Bulgarian Update

CSKA Sofia

Daniel N'DENE Bekono [83 rated, 30yo, GK]

11 games, 990 minutes

As you can tell, he hasn't missed a minute since the start of the season. However, I do not think he stands out with any good performances (could be blamed for Levski's goal in the derby match), but still because of his indispensable status, he can get an increase by 1.

Rating to increase to 84

Todor KYUCHUKOV [77 rated, 30yo, GK] and Ventsislav VELINOV [75 rated, 26yo, GK] both are going to keep their ratings as they have mostly been bench players through the season so far.

Jose FILIPE MACHADO [83 rated, 23yo, LB/CB]

7 games, 630 minutes, 1 red card

Beyond any doubt one of the best players at the club. With CSKA being currently first in the league, he could get an increase to 85 or at least 84.

Rating increase to 85

Yordan TODOROV [86 rated, 27yo, RB/RM]

11 games, 973 minutes, 3 goals

This guy will remember the games with Toulouse and the last derby match with Levski for his whole life. One Bulgarian journalist called him "Georgi Petkov's 4th goal post" because of his unbelievable miss in the dying minutes of the derby match. Doesn't posses a lot of football intelligence, but those are the Bulgarian players these days.

Rating to stay at 86

Nenad NASTIC [82 rated, 27yo, RB]

0 games, 0 minutes

Hasn't even been on the bench for neither of CSKA's 11 games so far. Signed by Stoycho Mladenov in January 2008, it seems that USA '94 legend Dimitar Penev does not like the Serbian and it's very likely that Nenad will be dismissed at the winter break.

Rating to decrease to 81

Marques ELI [80 rated, 26yo, RB]

7 games, 399 minutes, 1 goal

More of a back up player, usually left out at the expense of the obvious choice Yordan Todorov or youth team product Pavel Vidanov. Still, I think he deserves a bigger rating.

Rating increase to 82

Mitja MOREC [84 rated, 25yo, CB]

2 games, 55 minutes

Obviously Penev is not a big fan of the Serbians in the club.

Rating decrease to 82

Kiril KOTEV [83 rated, 26yo, RB/CB]

11 games, 990 minutes, 2 goals

Statistics say it all really.

Rating increase to 85

Quido LANDZAAT [82 rated, 29yo, CB]

0 games, 0 minutes

Was on trials with Aberdeen during the summer, but they weren't pleased with his physical preparation and he was sent back. Currently injured (since October 15th), but even when he comes back soon, I highly doubt he'll get in play.

Rating decrease to 80

Ivan IVANOV [82 rated, 20yo, CB/LB]

11 games, 990 minutes, 1 goal

Apart from his cemented place in the first team, he also participated in the WC qualifiers against Italy (0:0) and Georgia (0:0).

Rating increase to 85

Aleksandar BRANEKOV [80 rated, 21yo, CB/RB]

1 game, 81 minutes

Not much I can say about him.

Rating to stay at 80

Viktors MOROZS [82 rated, 28yo, CM]

3 games, 270 minutes, 1 goal

He missed out CSKA's first 8 games due to problems with his papers. After finally getting a debut with The Reds against Botev, he even managed to grab a goal. Hasn't missed a minute since then.

Rating to increase to 83

Yanko SANDANSKI [80 rated, 20yo, CM]

1 game, 1 minute

Came on as a strategic sub in the 1st league game against Belasitsa and since then he struggles to find a place even on the sub bench.

Rating decrease to 79

Nikolay CHIPEV [78 rated, 19yo, CM/AM]

9 games, 515 minutes

Definetly one for the future, who also will get a decent increase next time.

Rating increase to 82

Todor YANCHEV [85 rated, 32yo, DM]

11 games, 990 minutes

He's only good at stopping opposition's attacks. When it comes to building up CSKA's play...do not include him in the picture.

Rating to stay at 85

Antonio Marcos Junior MARQUINHOS [84 rated, 26yo, AM/RM]

10 games, 854 minutes, 2 goals

A good creative midfielder.

Rating increase to 85

Aleksandar TONEV [73 rated, 18yo, AM]

3 games, 195 minutes

Was a starter in the first two league games and then in the 5th league fixture with Minyor. I dunno if he'll be getting more chances, but he will move up from 73.

Rating increase to 76

Shaloze UDODJI [83 rated, 22yo, Wing/AM]

6 games, 228 minutes, 2 goals

This guy is really weird. After he got a Bulgarian passport, he insisted that his name should be changed to "Mitko Atanasov Dimitrov" (or something like that), but the Bulgarian fans still call him Udodji. He got a few appearances already for Bulgaria U21 in which he impressed.

Rating to stay at 83

Tavares ZE RUI [82 rated, 26yo, Wing/Fwd]

7 games, 435 minutes, 1 goal

Not much I can say about him.

Rating to increase to 83

Vladislav ZLATINOV [81 rated, 25yo, Fwd/Wing]

5 games, 122 minutes, 1 goal

Even though he's not a bad player, he's only back up at the Reds.

Rating to stay at 81

Martin TOSHEV [73 rated, 18yo, Fwd]

9 games, 320 minutes, 8 subs in

If a guy like Penev, who discovered Berbatov, Stiliyan Petrov and Martin Petrov, is including this lad on a regular basis in the CSKA squad, then he's really something

Rating to increase to 80

Zdravko LAZAROV [84 rated, 32yo, CF]

7 games, 587 minutes, 1 goal

Even though he's 32, he still has his lightning speed, which tortures every Bulgarian defense on a regular basis. He needs a positional change, because he's also playing as winger in the CSKA team.

Rating to stay at 84 or increase to 85

Vladimir MANCHEV [82 rated, 31yo, CF]

2 games, 95 minutes, 2 goals

Was signed before the 10th fixture with Chernomorets and his two goals were decisive in the 2:1 win over The Sharks. In the derby against Levski, however, he was tackled badly by Miroslav Ivanov and how to leave the field early on. Beyond any doubt he will be a permanent starter for The Reds.

(Potential) rating increase to 84-85

Evgeni YORDANOV [82 rated, 30yo, CF]

10 games, 709 minutes, 2 goals

Not the best of players, but it doesn't hurt having someone like him on the bench as a back up for Manchev. He featured heavily before Vladimir arrived, but it won't be the same from now on.

Rating to increase to 83

Gardar GUNNLAUGSSON [80 rated, 25yo, CF]

3 games, 26 minutes

Why he was signed is beyond me...

Rating to stay at 80

EDIT: listed on the DB as a Vihren player:

Pavel VIDANOV [80 rated, 20yo, RB]

5 games, 314 minutes

If I'm not mistaken, he's also a part of the Bulgaria U21 team and Penev likes to give him occasional chances to prove himself.

Rating increase to 81

Another edit...

Listed on the DB as a member of the Timisoara squad:

Maciel FILIPE DA COSTA [76 rated, 24yo, LM/AM]

2 games, 122 minutes

I dunno why Penev signed him, but after playing in two games and being subbed out in both, he was benched for the games with Chernomorets and Levski and didn't get a chance to play in them.

Early days to make an adequate prediction

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Re: Bulgarian Update

I just noticed that Sliven's squad was added and they are all in their 70ies, so buy the whole team while you still can, they're currently 4th in the league!!! :D

After my euphoria...time for the magic numbers:

Zdravko CHAVDAROV [80 rated, 28yo, GK]

11 games, 990 minutes

Rating increase to 83

Evgeni KARAMANOV [76 rated, 22yo, GK]

0 games

Rating to stay at 76

Ivelin YANEV [78 rated, 26yo, RB]

11 games, 990 minutes

Rating increase to 82

Kostadin STOYANOV [79 rated, 22yo, CB/DM]

9 games, 810 minutes

Rating increase to 82

Zhivko DINEV [76 rated, 21yo, Def]

7 games, 579 minutes

Rating increase to 80

Vladislav YAMUKOV [78 rated, 28yo, Def]

10 games, 900 minutes

Rating increase to 81

Dimo BAKALOV [73 rated, 19yo, Mid]

9 games, 227 minutes

Rating increase to 78

Kosta YANEV [79 rated, 25yo, Mid]

10 games, 870 minutes

Rating increase to 83

Vasil VELEV [74 rated, 24yo, CM]

8 games, 248 minutes

Rating increase to 78

Stefan KIKOV [79 rated, 26yo, CM/RM]

11 games, 975 minutes

Rating increase to 83

Marin CENOV [76 rated, 27yo, Mid]

5 games, 270 minutes

Rating increase to 78

Petar STOYANOV [74 rated, 23yo, Mid] *STAR BUY*

7 games, 567 minutes

Rating increase to 81

Sergei MIRONOV [73 rated, 20yo, AM/Wing]

3 games, 186 minutes

Rating increase to 75

Ivan STOYANOV [81 rated, 25yo, Wing/Fwd] *STAR BUY*

11 games, 989 minutes, 4 goals

Rating increase to 84

Petar KOLEV [73 rated, 23yo, Wing]

3 games, 134 minutes

Rating increase to 75

Yavor VANDEV [81 rated, 25yo, Fwd/Wing]

11 games, 881 minutes, 6 goals

Rating increase to 84

Miroslav MINDEV [78 rated, 28yo, Fwd] [note: I really don't think he's a striker...]

10 games, 900 minutes, 0 goals [more like a midfielder]

Rating increase to 83

Ismail ISA [76 rated, 19yo, Fwd]

6 games, 156 minutes

Rating to stay at 76

Tsvetomir MATEV [76 rated, 22yo, Fwd]

Featured once as an unused sub for Sliven, before being loaned out to "B" group side Svilengrad, where he's played 7 games and scored 2 goals. His rating is not going anywhere atm.

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Re: Bulgarian Update

3rd in the league - Litex Lovech...

Uros GOLUBOVIC [84 rated, 32yo, GK]

9 games, 810 minutes

If I have to be honest I hate this keeper with a passion, specially because of his inadequate performance cost Litex a win over Aston Villa in the UEFA Cup.

Rating to stay at 84 [even though I'd like to see him decrease, he's still first choice...]

Todor TODOROV [83 rated, 26yo, GK]

2 games, 180 minutes

Rating to decrease to 82

Mihail VENKOV [84 rated, 25yo, LB/CB]

10 games, 853 minutes

A lot of people think that it's better to have Bulgarian players in the Bulgarian national team and that Venkov would be a much better option than Lucio Wagner. Yet, that doesn't seem likely to happen, so...

Rating to stay at 84

Petar ZANEV [82 rated, 23yo, LB]

6 games, 540 minutes

He was unlucky to be loaned by Stoichkov's Celta - I say unlucky because Stoichkov might've been a legend as a player, but as a coach he's...pathetic would be the politest word I can think of. So, Zanev got hold back in his career during that time. At one point he was in the national team for a few games, but not at the moment. The harsh two point downfall he received on the last rating changes could be reversed next time.

Rating increase to 83

Dzemal BERBEROVIC [85 rated, 27yo, RB/CB]

10 games, 617 minutes

Rating to stay at 85

Todor TODOROV [77 rated, 25yo, RB]

????????????????????????????????????????????????

Cedric URAS [82 rated, 30yo, CB/RB]

He's currently in Switzerland with Xamax, so I have no idea about him.

Plamen NIKOLOV [83 rated, 23yo, CB]

5 games, 198 minutes

Rating to stay at 83

Alejandro CICHERO [84 rated, 31yo, CB]

Transferred to Chinese club Shendong Lucheng .

Cedric CAMBON [82 rated, 22yo, CB]

8 games, 636 minutes

Rating increase to 83

Alexandre BARTHE [77 rated, 22yo, Def] *STAR BUY*

8 games, 720 minutes

Rating increase to 82

Wellington TOM [85 rated, 23yo, LM/AM]

11 games, 858 minutes

He's an amazing player with great technique and dribble, but with Litex he can't get further than 85.

Rating to stay at 85

Stanislav MANOLEV [84 rated, 22yo, RM/RB]

10 games, 877 minutes

Rating to stay at 83

Alexis BERTIN [82 rated, 28yo, CM]

9 games, 792 minutes

Rating increase to 83

Jeremy ACEDO [78 rated, 21yo, CM/RM]

Only featured in a couple of friendlies. Not even a bench player in the league games.

Rating to decrease to 77

Momchil TSVETANOV [75 rated, 18yo, Mid]

2 games, 33 minutes

He was touted as a great talent when he was getting regular appearances with Litex at the age of 17, but he's out of favors with current boss Stoilov.

Rating to stay at 75

Correa SANDRINHO [83 rated, 28yo, AM]

11 games, 981 minutes

Rating increase to 84

Ivelin POPOV [86 rated, 21yo, Wing/Fwd]

10 games, 800 minutes

Rating to stay at 86

Emil ANGELOV [85 rated, 28yo, Fwd/AM]

11 games, 443 minutes, 1 goal

Even though he's a regular rotation player for Litex, he's not the guy who pounced in important goals for Levski in the UEFA Cup run a few years ago.

Rating decrease to 84

Roberto Eduardo DU BALA [84 rated, 27yo, Fwd/AM]

3 games, 59 minutes

Rating to decrease to 82

Krum BIBISHKOV [83 rated, 26yo, CF]

9 games, 249 minutes

Rating to stay at 83

Wilfried NIFLORE [83 rated, 27yo, CF]

9 games, 628 minutes, 5 goals

Rating increase to 85

Adrian FERNANDEZ [80 rated, 27yo, Fwd] is a member of the Cherno more squad, not Litex...

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Re: Bulgarian Update

Seftinho...I hope you managed to sign them :P

Spartak (Varna) - Levski 0:1

Goalscorer...who else but Joaozinho?

First highlight: Spartak's keeper Iliya Nikolov fumbles the ball, then Gonzo strikes it, but it's cleared off the goal line by a defender.

Second highlight: Georgi Sarmov sees his long shot saved by Nikolov.

[Halfway through the first half, David Bystron suffered an injury and was substituted by Viktor Genev]

Third highlight: Darko Tasevski crosses from corner, Viktor Genev's well-placed header is denied by the post.

Fourth highlight: Jivko Milanov throws the ball to Ze Soares, who neatly crosses it in the box. A Spartak defender doesn't clean it well and Joazinho takes advantage by opening the score.

Fifth..."highlight": Emil Velev lost his temper and that provoked cursing from the Spartak fans, who started throwing things at him. One of those things was a pack of sunflower seeds, which Velev obviously enjoyed :D

Sixth highlight: Gonzo makes a perfect through pass for Joaozinho, who hits a perfect volley, but it ends up side netting.

P.S.: Tsvetan Dimitrov started for the last time before Petkov returns from injury and early in the game he made a tremendous save which was cut from these highlights. He really will be a star buy for anyone if Bulgaria national Petkov gets a good offer during the winter break. Lachezar Baltanov started yet another game, so buy him while you still can... ;)

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Re: Bulgarian Update

Seftinho...I hope you managed to sign them :P

Spartak (Varna) - Levski 0:1

Goalscorer...who else but Joaozinho?

First highlight: Spartak's keeper Iliya Nikolov fumbles the ball' date=' then Gonzo strikes it, but it's cleared off the goal line by a defender.

Second highlight: Georgi Sarmov sees his long shot saved by Nikolov.

[Halfway through the first half, David Bystron suffered an injury and was substituted by Viktor Genev']

Third highlight: Darko Tasevski crosses from corner, Viktor Genev's well-placed header is denied by the post.

Fourth highlight: Jivko Milanov throws the ball to Ze Soares, who neatly crosses it in the box. A Spartak defender doesn't clean it well and Joazinho takes advantage by opening the score.

Fifth..."highlight": Emil Velev lost his temper and that provoked cursing from the Spartak fans, who started throwing things at him. One of those things was a pack of sunflower seeds, which Velev obviously enjoyed :D

Sixth highlight: Gonzo makes a perfect through pass for Joaozinho, who hits a perfect volley, but it ends up side netting.

P.S.: Tsvetan Dimitrov started for the last time before Petkov returns from injury and early in the game he made a tremendous save which was cut from these highlights. He really will be a star buy for anyone if Bulgaria national Petkov gets a good offer during the winter break. Lachezar Baltanov started yet another game, so buy him while you still can... ;)

That's great news! :D:P

Sadly in the setups I'm trying to buy them in (with Div 3 or Div 4 teams in England), I only have about £1-£2m, so I have to try and raise some cash first, although I got Toshev and Stoyanov as they're cheap. :) Getting Ivanov for a few of my better teams as well, looks a promising talent.

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Re: Bulgarian Update

I figured the teams below the top 4 aren't good enough to be singled out...and I already put out "the best of the rest". Lazyness got to me...

The site www.pfl.bg is at your disposal if you wish to review the Bulgarian teams, though.

News from today:

Dimitar Penev wasn't happy at his team's performance against Lokomotiv Plovdiv [bulgarian Cup game].

"We'll definitely be fining [some players]. The foreigners were awful. Udodji, for example...I won't go on with the other names. You know that these foreigners were here before me. They play on 60% [of what they're capable of], even less. They should learn from Todor Yanchev. He's an example for how someone should perform for CSKA. At least three of the foreigners will be kicked out during the winter break." said the outraged Penev.

The coach also commented on the yet another mistake by Bekono N'Dene, which led to Lokomotiv's goal.

"Bekono makes mistakes, due to one of them we had to play extra time. But at this point he's the most experienced keeper on the team and I'm going to keep relying on him. The others are young and they need time. I hope Bekono would be able to perfect his game."

Those are major news, so I'm waiting on a really interesting winter break transfer period :D

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Re: Bulgarian Update

I think in my rating predictions I may have been too generous - seeing that CSKA, being rivals of my favorites Levski, are actually not as good as I've thought them to be (guess not watching them does that). Still I have to put a warning sign that journalists sometimes tend to be a bit over exaggerating, but then again I think the following article would shed some more light on The Reds.

Director of Football Aleksandar Todorov mentioned that CSKA has too many foreigners and they will look to offload during the winter.

Captain Todor Yanchev was devastated that some of his teammates aren't giving 100%.

Dimitar Penev boldly stated that some the players aren't good enough for a club like CSKA.

Who are those players in the team then? And why no one doesn't say their names out loud?

Even if you're not a big specialist, one would know it's about Marquinhos, Bekono (N'Dene) and Yordan Todorov.

The Brazillian definitely is quality, but he doesn't try to perform at his best lately. The Cameroonian goalie gave food for thought to his critics because of Levski's goal in the last fixture. He went on with the mistakes against Cherno More (league game, 1:1). The midfielder Todorov is in a serious crisis. It's obvious that he's trying, but he's not of any benefit to the team.

Ze Rui also received a lot of insults. He got quite a few chances to prove himself but he disappointed.

Udodji's position in CSKA seems even more pessimistic. First choice regular last season, now he fails to make even the match squad. He plays in the "B" team, but it's doubtful that he likes it.

CSKA's play is not going great and that was clear even in the matches which they won with a lot of luck. I mean wins like the one against Chernomorets (2:1) in Sofia, along with other games like with Pirin (2:2) in Blagoevgrad, saved by a goal in the dying minutes. But no one at "Bulgarian Army" is used to seeing such an impotent team on their own stadium.

In a second consecutive home game CSKA not only doesn't manage to dominate the game, but they leave their guests to have more of the ball. The truth could've shown 2 weeks ago when only Vladimir Manchev's individual skills saved CSKA against Chernomorets.

Against Levski, Penev's boys didn't impress. It was obvious from their style of play that even a point would be satisfying to them. When you're just going with the flow and you're not making a pit stop, it's normal to expect you're gonna get a flat tire.

That's exactly what happened on Saturday against Cherno More. The Reds thought they win the 3 points by habit. It didn't work out.

And if CSKA are having problems lately, they have the toughest to come. In the last 3 fixtures before the winter break, they are visiting Lokomotiv Sofia, then they host Litex and finally they visit Mezdra to play against high-flying Lokomotiv.

There you see how it can turn out - the five points lead on top, which The Reds had before the game with Cherno More, were actually not enough.

Meanwhile, CSKA has a long substitute bench and a total of 35 contracted players. For some of the foreigners there's no place even on the bench so they play for the "B" side. The chances for Mitja Morac, Gardar Gunlaugsson, Nenad Nastic, Eli Marques and Felipe Da Costa are very limited. Quido Landzaat's departure from CSKA should be looked at as a foregone conclusion.

On the face of it, CSKA has a serious competition for the first team, but realistically - Penev barely completes the starting 11. The others are either not good enough for CSKA or don't want to play there. Maybe it's time Penev tells which players are to blame? So they can take action. If not, it won't be surprising if Levski finish as Christmas champions.

Hope this will help you when it comes to judging CSKA's play...

P.S.: The article was written after the league game with Cherno more (1:1), so before today's cup clash with Lokomotiv, which makes a total of 3 back-to-back mistakes by Bekono, that are proving costly to the team.

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Re: Bulgarian Update

Serbia - Bulgaria 6:1

6' S. Milosevic [missed penalty]

9' [1 - 0] M. Jovanovic

16' S. Milosevic [missed penalty]

20' [1 - 1] B. Georgiev

27' [2 - 1] M. Jovanovic

28' [3 - 1] S. Milosevic

34' [4 - 1] S. Milosevic

57' [5 - 1] N. Milijas

67' [6 - 1] D. Lazovic

WoW. This is just brilliant. One thing I regret about is that Serbia stopped scoring after the 6th, even though if we count the two penalties and two shots that found Georgi Petkov's post, that would've made it 10. Savo Milosevic couldn't have wished for a better way to end his national career, even though I'm sure that if he wasn't subbed off so early, he could've gotten a hattrick, if not more.

The biggest problem in the game was the defense. The Serbians were doing all they want to with the great assistance of Valentin Iliev and Aleksandar Tunchev. Some Bulgarians were wondering how we can use foreigners like Igor Tomasic as central defenders - well, now they have their questions answered. It was like shooting practice rather than a real football match.

Georgi Petkov - yes, he conceded 6 in this game and if it wasn't for him [and maybe Savo's poor taking of the two penalties], it would've easily been 8. In all the situations for the 6 goals Petkov was left with nothing to do, even Buffon couldn't have saved those. Rating 7

Zhivko Milanov - the right back was unusually poor and a lot of the Serbian attacks came from his zone. He made the foul for Serbia's second penalty. Rating 5

Aleksandar Tunchev - if he plays the same way for Leicester, I'm pretty sure they'll soon loan him out to Redditch. Rating 3

Valentin Iliev - totally inadequate, likewise Tunchev. Made the foul for the first penalty. Rating 3

Mihail Venkov - I said in my review of Litex that a lot of people were shouting out that he should be on the left back and not Lucio Wagner. Somehow he didn't make any difference but he's the least to blame from the defense. Rating 5

Stiliyan Petrov - yet another game where he's just some shadow in the center of the midfield. I don't even know why he bothers to come playing for the national team. Rating 4

Chavdar Yankov - he was trying, but it wasn't happening. Not with such teammates that hide behind the back of an opposition player so they won't get the ball. Rating 5

Velizar Dimitrov - everything he tried tonight was a major failure. Passes, long shots...CSKA must be happy they cashed in on him in the right moment. Rating 4

Blagoy Georgiev - the scorer of the only goal [from a free kick, very well taken I must say] was buzzing through the whole pitch and was the only one [with keeper Petkov] that actually gave a **** for this national team. We've laughed at Blagoy for his model looks, but he's really turning into a class act. Rating 8

Dimitar Berbatov - when the result was 3:1 for the Serbians, Berbatov showed everyone what a coward he is - and he walked off the field. Yes, he decided to just walk off. And I'm not gonna take **** from any United fan that come to his defense saying that "he got a 'slight' injury", because this is ********. He didn't even let coach Markov know, he just walked off after Serbia's third goal. Yeah, that's the leader thing to do. I hope he retires from the national team for the sake of every Bulgarian out there. The local journalist are calling him "Barby" with a very good reason. Rating 1

Dimitar Rangelov - the Enegrie striker was lost during the first part, but he was one of the few positives in the second, running all over the place, fighting for every ball and being a threat to the Serbian goal. Rating 6

The Substitutes:

Tsvetan Genkov [on for Berbatov after 30 minutes]

He's not good enough for the national team, I'll give you that. Rating 4

Kosta Yanev [on for Chavdar Yankov at half-time]

This is one of the few benefits not only for the Bulgarian team, but you guys. Kosta Yanev made his international debut today and he was okay. In comparison to the highly-payed and overrated Stiliyan Petrov - well, I'd take Yanev instead. Rating 6

Stanislav Manolev [on for Zhivko Milanov at half-time]

Our right back was still the problematic place from which the Serbians were starting most of their attacks. Manolev has always been just an average talent, definitely does not deserve to be a national player. Rating 4

Kiril Kotev [on for Aleksandar Tunchev at half-time]

Kotev was a bit more solid than Tunchev, but still he and Iliev left many gaps in the defense. Rating 5

Ivan Stoyanov [on for Stiliyan Petrov after 65 minutes]

Another debut from a Sliven player. At that point of the game it was already 5:1 and just a couple of minutes after, Serbia scored the 6th, so they took the play in their own field and that let Stoyanov become an active part of the game as a left winger. He did alright, specially when you consider it was only his first game. Rating 6

Yordan Minev [on for Mihail Venkov after 68 minutes]

You really should start wondering what kind of potential the Bulgarian team has when we're calling up a wing back from a team that's fighting against relegation in the Bulgarian "A" group. For a first timer, the Botev player didn't make any crucial mistakes and he was just average, like most of the team. Rating 5

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Re: Bulgarian Update

Lachezar Baltanov played another 90 minutes in the away game to Minyor (Pernik). He was replacing the suspended for the game Zhivko Milanov, so Lachezar had to perform as right back and he was really good at it. The sooner you make a move for Baltanov, the better for your team.

Joaozinho made the assist for the first goal in that game, which was scored by Georgi Ivanov - Gonzo and both of those players were really terrorizing the Minyor defense throughout the whole game. Ze Soares and Darko Tasevski were the other two that caused many problems for the hosts and those players were involved in the build up for Gonzo's second goal. Now Gonzo has 4 goals in the last 3 games and it seems that the derby with CSKA returned his hunger for goals.

I hope that I would be able to upload a video of the match soon enough.

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Re: Bulgarian Update

Dimitar Berbatov - when the result was 3:1 for the Serbians' date=' Berbatov showed everyone what a coward he is - and he walked off the field. Yes, he decided to just walk off. And I'm not gonna take **** from any United fan that come to his defense saying that "he got a 'slight' injury", because this is ********. He didn't even let coach Markov know, he just walked off after Serbia's third goal. Yeah, that's the leader thing to do. I hope he retires from the national team for the sake of every Bulgarian out there. The local journalist are calling him "Barby" with a very good reason. [b']Rating 1[/b]

Wow. :eek: I can imagine. He was fairly lazy last season, this season for Spurs he was beyond lazy, just didn't put in any effort. For Man Utd he's still quite lazy (never tracks back or goes in for tackles - Rooney and Tevez do all that), and I imagine he hates playing with lower ability team-mates than those he does in the EPL. Just shows how ignorant he is.

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Re: Bulgarian Update

Bulgarian Cup - 1/16 Final

Lokomotiv (Sofia) - Levski (Sofia) 1:2 AET [Paskov; Joaozinho (pen.), N. Dimitrov]

http://sportal.bg/video.php?video_id=10059

The hosts managed to get the lead after half-hour - a corner kick and poor positioning by Bystron allowed Paskov the time and space to head it in. But then a magnificent individual run by Tasevski was ended by Bondzulic, who fouled him in the area. Joaozinho stepped up for the kick and made no mistake - 1:1.

Afterwards both teams had their chances, but things weren't settled for 90 minutes, so extra time had to follow. Supersub Nikolay Dimitrov eventually grabbed the winner 6 minutes from time with a well placed shot.

The Levski team is really starting to look like a well-built machine now and all the players are battling hard for every ball, running all over the pitch and basically playing their hearts out - which is what every fan wants to see.

Vladimir Gadzhev had yet another great game and he's clearly in good form. He was substituted after 80 minutes by Lachezar Baltanov [haven't you signed him yet? :P ], who couldn't quite get it going (probably because of the poor pitch and heavy snow). Darko Tasevski seems like a magician in midfield now....Unbelievable assist for the second goal in the last league game with Minyor.

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Re: Bulgarian Update

Update: do NOT buy Zdravko Lazarov nor Vladimir Manchev from CSKA. They were bound to be the most important players for CSKA, but Zdravko suffered a very bad injury that sidelined him for 4-5 months (in the league win 2:0 against Litex), which is also the same thing that Manchev probably suffered in today's away draw to Lokomotiv Mezdra (2:2). It was expected that Vladimir's injury wouldn't be a bad one, but it may have a turn to the worst. The most criticized players by the Red fans are Ivan Ivanov [well, duh, he's still young and makes mistakes], Evgeni Yordanov and Yordan Todorov, who scored two goals but he also had another chance to complete a hattrick (when the result was still 2:1 for CSKA and in the dying minutes), but he missed it. In the post match interview, Yordan said that because of his miss in this game, Levski will be top of the league tomorrow [when they play against Pirin at home].

In other news, Ivaylo Petrov is set to return to CSKA Sofia during the winter break, so Daniel N'Dene Bekono is no longer a good purchase. The Cameroonian has been dealing with a lot of criticism lately and he's one of the main factors in CSKA's late downfall. It's 99% sure that he won't be CSKA's 1st choice keeper, regardless if The Reds sign Petrov back or go for another keeper. Stoyko Sakaliev (S C, currently at Spartak Varna) is also rumored to be returning at "Bulgarian Army".

The final league games for this half of the season are played tomorrow, while next weekend will be the 1/8 finals of the Bulgarian cup. Afterwards I will be updating this thread only if when 100% sure transfers occur.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Re: Bulgarian Update

CSKA's Martin Toshev [18yo, 73 rated, Fwd] scored two in today's cup game against Balkan (Botevgrad) and the match is not even over yet - so he might push up for a hattrick :P

Something tells me that we're going to see a lot more of him in the future, so make sure you get him ;)

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Re: Bulgarian Update

This is an article by "Meridian Match" regarding the keepers in the Bulgarian league. It would shed some light on their overall performance, although I've mentioned some of the stuff already.

Keeper crisis

During the past football year a few tendencies have formed. Georgi Petkov was the undisputed N1 in "A" group. He proved it also in the national team, where only he and Blagoy Georgiev had nothing to be ashamed of after the walkover in Belgrade. For the past years that's the only Levski player who's shown consistency and at a top level. During the autumn, Petkov conceded only one goal in the 9 games he featured in - the only goal came from a very debatable penalty in the derby with CSKA. His alternatives - Tsvetan Dimitrov and Daniel Kiss proved to be far away from his level, which applies with a greater power on the Slovak.

In most of the other teams, the coaches had serious troubles with the man between the posts. CSKA, for example, Bekono was one of the weakest links in the team which showed in the derby with Levski, the away game to Sliven (1:3 defeat for The Reds) and against Lokomotiv Sofia (1:1). Even with that said, the Cameroonian was heavily involved in every game during the autumn. The product of CSKA's youth team Vencislav Velinov didn't get a single chance to shine and the surprising part about it is that happens with Dimitar Penev in charge - someone who's always preferred the younger ones. Apparently Penev is not as brave.

Other teams, more specifically their coaches, tried to solve their keeper problems with rotation. That way Lokomotiv Mezdra ended up using their 3rd choice keeper, Yulian Levashki, after both Radostin Stanev and Nikolay Georgiev failed between the posts. In very similar position was Plovdiv's Lokomotiv. The best display at The Smurf's goal was by Stefano Kunchev and although he played only for a game, his magnificent saves helped the team to win very important 3 points against Cherno more. In his case it was proved once again that someone's unhappiness is another one's happiness, as he probably wouldn't have been given a chance if it wasn't for Stavrev's erratic displays and Kiril Akalski's injuries. Stefano Kunchev, although he played for only 35 minutes, was the only keeper that didn't concede a goal.

Stanimir Stoilov had major headaches who to choose between Uros Golubovic and Todor Todorov. The Serbian failed Litex against Aston Villa and that forced the manager to temporarily let the former N1 Todorov between the posts.

In Slavia the talent of Mario Kirev shone, who had a marvelous game against Lokomotiv Sofia. But he wouldn't have gotten a chance if it wasn't for Yordan Gospodinov's mistakes. If we can make a general conclusion we can safely say that the foreign keepers disappointed. Typical examples of that are Bekono and Golubovic, while the other Serbians - Bondzulic and Cvorovic haven't been standing out with anything. If it wasn't for Vladislav Stoyanov's long term injury, Cvorovic would've never gotten a chance, because he is way beyond Stoyanov's level. Maybe the foreigner that impressed most is Florian Lucchini, who's saved penalty against Levski proved to be vital in the historic 1:0 win over The Blues.

Good words deserve Mario Kirev, Vladislav Stoyanov and Zdravko Chavdarov. Belasitsa also can thank Angel Manolov for keeping their slim chances to avoid relegation alive.

The amount of goals during this season is not only because of the group's lowering quality, but the keepers' good performances.

Top 5 Keeper Matches

1. Mario Kirev [Lokomotiv Sofia - Slavia Sofia 0:1]

The young keeper has done a lot of growing this autumn, his peak coming in the last derby game. He saved half a dozen 100% goal situations, confidently blocking shots from 5-6 meters away and he's the main figure in Slavia's triumph on that day.

2. Georgi Petkov [Levski - CSKA 1:1]

Whatever we can say about Petkov, it would never be enough. He proved it once again in the arch rival derby. In the first half he saved certain goals after shots from Lazarov and Todorov. Thanks to him The Blues managed to keep a narrow margin with CSKA and eventually take the leader position in the table.

3. Zdravko Chavdarov [sliven - Levski 0:0]

He left the Levski strikers in despair with his solid performance in this game. Even though his team was totally outplayed on that day, he still kept a point for his team.

4. Stefano Kunchev [Lokomotiv Plovdiv - Cherno more 1:0]

The Smurfs had a rough autumn. In it they took a small, yet decent amount of wins. One of them was against Cherno more's tough team. Lokomotiv Plovdiv owes its success mainly to Kunchev. He had to come in after 55 minutes of play and he turned into a hero with his first official game.

5. Angel Manolov [belasitsa - Sliven 2:1]

Even though Belasitsa are dead last in the table, Manolov is the strongest part of the team. He proved it in the last autumn fixture against Sliven, when Belasitsa grabbed a very important win against the high-flying newcomers. Before that also impressed against Cherno more [2:0] and Litex [1:1].

Top 5 Keeper Shame

1. Daniel Bekono N'Dene [Lokomotiv Sofia - CSKA 1:1]

The Cameroonian made serious mistakes in two of the Sofia derbies. His teammates and fans blamed him for Gonzo's 15th goal against CSKA in the arch rival derby. His bigger mistake though was in the match with The Railroadmen. It took him about three seconds to run down the goalline, but he was never able to reach the ball, sent in the net by Ivan Bandalovski.

2. Radostin Stanev [Lokomotiv Mezdra - Levski 0:1]

The experienced keeper made a decisive mistake which killed the game early on. Nikolay Dimitrov's weak free-kick bounced in front of him, fumbled into Stanev's arms and ended in the net.

3. Yordan Gospodinov [Pirin - Slavia 3:2]

Gospodinov totally failed in this match, because Pirin's 2nd and 3rd goal could not have happened without his assistance. During the first situation, he didn't adequately position and Pirin's corner was followed by a header from Georgiev, which hit Gospodinov's back and then the net. For the 3rd goal, Yordan put the ball on to Borislav Hazurov's foot, who didn't hesitate to put the game beyond doubt.

4. Stoyan Stavrev [Lokomotiv Plovdiv - Litex 1:3]

The keeper rushed out after a Litex corner, but he had no intention to jump for the ball. Add to that Wilfried Niflore's goalscoring abilities and you get a decisive 2nd goal, which put the game beyond Lokomotiv's reach.

5. Ivan Cvorovic [Chernomorets - Levski 2:2]

If it wasn't for Cvorovic, The Sharks could've bitten Levski on that day. The first goal by Tasevski came from a foul and even though he put real power to it, it was in Cvorovic's corner. For the second goal, after Sarmov's header the ball spent a lot of time in the air and any keeper with good reflexes could've dealt with it.

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Re: Bulgarian Update

CSKA get their first two signings

CSKA have snapped up Rui Miguel and David Silva from high-flying Lokomotiv Mezdra. David Silva has featured in all 15 games for Lokomotiv, playing a total of 1275 minutes and got 2 goals. Rui Miguel was also a first choice regular, participating in every game and getting 1259 minutes on the pitch, but only scoring 3 goals. Their contracts will start from 1st January 2009.

Both are currently not on the DB, since Lokomotiv just promoted.

Rui Miguel Marinho Reis or simply Rui Miguel is born 30 January 1984 and he plays as a striker.

David Mendes Silva (born 11 October 1986) is a Portuguese footballer playing in the midfield.

I dunno if those guys are going to be any good in CSKA and I dunno how The Reds will even start the 2nd half of the season, as they currently are in a lot of debt and the guys from the Professional Football League committee said they are the only team that doesn't meet the requirements set by UEFA.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Re: Bulgarian Update

Seeing that when the update happens, the Bulgarian league will still be on a break, I think it's time for the final magic numbers.

Levski:

Georgi Petkov [85 rated, 32yo, GK]

10 games, 900 minutes, 1 goal conceded [from a dubious penalty]

My prediction hasn't changed - he should go up by two.

Qualifiers 2010: Georgia - Bulgaria or "Georgia - Petkov"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ltrmMcBTNzs

Rating increase to 87

Daniel Kiss [81 rated, 24yo, GK]

3 games, 270 minutes

Kiss has been released and he's going back to his former club.

Rating decrease to 79-80

Bozhidar Mitrev [76 rated, 21yo, GK]

Rating to stay at 76

Tsvetan Dimitrov (74 rated, 21yo, GK]

3 games, 270 minutes

Good talent with plenty of potential, could be the N1 in the team if Petkov gets a good offer from abroad.

Rating increase to 76

Lucio Wagner [86 rated, 32yo, LB/LM]

10 games, 900 minutes

Rating to stay at 86

Veselin Minev [82 rated, 28yo, LB]

7 games, 630 minutes

He's been also playing as a central defender lately, so that position should be added to his profile.

Rating to stay at 82

Zhivko Milanov [85 rated, 24yo, RB]

14 games, 1216 minutes

He's one of my favorites in the Levski team. Zhivko is probably the most molested right back I've seen. In a lot of times he takes the ball cleanly and then the outraged opponent fouls him - or Zhivko makes a forward run and again the opponents have no other chance to stop him, but foul the lad. Milanov is also a key part of the Bulgarian national team, playing all possible minutes from the 3 qualifiers so far (not to mention he's also being playing previously as well).

Rating increase to 86

David Bystron [85 rated, 25yo, CB/DM]

14 games, 1196 minutes

Rating to stay at 85

Youssef Rabeh [85 rated, 23yo, CB]

12 games, 1080 minutes

Absolute legend. A member of the Moroccan team and also the first name on the Levski team sheet. Dubbed "The Moroccan Bekenbauer" by fans in his country. Will probably leave to French side Nice at the winter break.

Rating increase to 86

Chakib Benzoukane [80 rated, 22yo, CB]

It came to my attention that he wasn't even registered in the Levski team for the 1st half of the season, due to his long-term injury and also the number of maximum number of foreigners allowed. When Rabeh leaves, which is 90% certain, he'll get registered in the team and very likely Chakib will once again become a permanent starter. Discard him this time around, but make sure to get him in the future.

Rating to decrease to 79

Simeon Ivanov [72 rated, 18yo, CB]

The nicknamed "Materazzi" defender was demoted to the youth team.

Rating to stay at 72

Todor Stoev [70 rated, 20yo, CB]

If SM fix past mistakes [overlooked at the previous update] he should get an increase by 5 due to playing 15 games last season with Vidima. Right now Stoev is a permanent starter for Levski's "B" team.

Rating change to 75

Viktor Genev [74 rated, 20yo, Def]

5 games, 334 minutes

Definitely one for the future.

Rating increase to 76

Nikolay Dimitrov [85 rated, 21yo, LM/W]

13 games, 603 minutes, 2 goals

Rating to stay at 85

Eli Zizov [71 rated, 17yo, LM/AM]

Key player for Levski's "B" side. Unlikely to make a break into the first team, though, because The Blues already have the maximum amount of foreigners registered.

Rating to stay at 71

Vladimir Gadzhev (80 rated, 21yo, RM/AM)

11 games, 553 minutes, 1 goal

Lately Velev has restored his faith in Gadzhev and The Blues will do whatever it takes to buy the other 50% of his rights [owned by PAO].

Should get a positional change to CM/AM.

Rating increase to 82

Rachid Tiberkanine (78 rated, 23yo, RM/AM)

9 games, 405 minutes, 3 goals

After a nasty traffic accident involving Rachid, Rabeh and stupid taxi drivers, Rachid has failed to show the class he was showing at first, which left him out of the team

Rating increase to 80

Lachezar Baltanov (76 rated, 20yo, RM/AM)

10 games, 722 minutes

He's used by Velev as a CM, RM and RB. I wonder how can SI put that to their database... :P Seriously though, Baltanov, Gadzhev and Sarmov are used in a rotation system for the two central midfielder positions in the last few games and every fan is finally glad to see Miroslav Ivanov out of the equation.

Rating increase to 83

Georgi Sarmov (83 rated, 23yo, CM/LM)

11 games, 835 minutes

He's a key midfielder and he's battling hard for every ball, but he's definitely not as impressive as Gadzhev. Still, due to his first team status I believe he deserves an increase.

Rating increase to 84

Miroslav Ivanov (83 rated, 26yo, CM)

13 games, 691 minutes

In the last few games of the season he was finally benched by Velev and his chances to play are limited. A few days ago he expressed a willingness to move away from the club and it seems that his days as a Levski player are near the end.

Rating to stay at 83

Darko Tasevski (84 rated, 24yo, AM/RM)

13 games, 932 minutes, 3 goals

He finally started to produce the goods for The Blues and their success will rely heavily on his creativity and flair. Regular in the Macedonian national team.

Rating increase to 85

Maryan Ognyanov (76 rated, 20yo, AM/Wing)

1 game, 44 minutes

Will be loaned out for the 2nd part of the season, so if you have him on your team - do not sell yet.

Rating to stay at 76

Filho Ze Soares (83 rated, 25yo, W/F)

14 games, 1104 minutes

Rating increase to 84

Natailton Joaozinho (82 rated, 19yo, Wing)

12 games, 912 minutes

I would seriously fail to make a count of how many great crosses and opportunities he's provided for his teammates. Will hit 85 [why not even more if he becomes a Bulgaria national] on the next rating changes surely.

Rating increase to 84

Georgi Hristov (85 rated, 23yo, Fwd)

13 games, 871 minutes, 5 goals

In the last Levski game I watched which had struggling Hristov's presence in it, one thing convinced me that this lad is never going to make it in The Blues - a cross was sent from the left, it seemed that an opposition defender will take care of it, but he surprisingly missed the ball. Behind him was Hristov, who didn't expect the ball to reach him, so a golden chance was missed. Seriously, what kind of striker are you if you don't expect in any moment that you'll receive the ball?!

Rating decrease to 84 [at least, personally I wouldn't give him more than 81]

Enyo Krastovchev (83 rated, 24yo, Fwd)

3 games, 152 minutes

Average striker who's only good at "A" group level. Suffered a nasty injury lately which prevents him from playing.

Rating decrease to 82

Sales Jean Carlos (83 rated, 24yo, Fwd/AM)

4 games, 102 minutes, 2 goals

Started showing slight signs of improving lately and hopefully there'll be more to come from him in the future.

Rating decrease to 82

Aleksandar Kirov (70 rated, 18yo, Fwd)

Demoted to the youth team.

Georgi Ivanov - Gonzo (84 rated, 32yo, CF)

14 games, 928 minutes, 6 goals

After the derby with CSKA, Gonzo was reborn and every Blues fan will be disappointed with this break coming just when Gonzo got into a lethal form again. Leader, legend and a star for Levski.

Rating to stay at 84/increase to 85

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Re: Bulgarian Update

The current top goalscorer for the Bulgarian "A" group Iliya Iliev [AM/W, 83 rated, 33yo] and Bulgarian U21 national Viktor Petakov [currently not on the DB] have signed contracts with overachievers Sliven. Both were playing for the other newcomers in "A" group - Lokomotiv Mezdra.

Iliev is likely to go up by one or two in the upcoming rating changes, while Petakov is definitely a talent that is worth taking a look at when he's added.

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Re: Bulgarian Update

Lokomotiv Plovdiv sign a 26 years old defender

The central defender Zheko Yordanov signed a contract on Tuesday with Lokomotiv Plovdiv.

The 26 years old became the first signing for The Smurfs during the winter transfer window.

Yordanov started his career at CSKA's youth teams, but he never got to play for the seniors. So far he was playing for Kaliakra, who dissolved his contract on mutual terms. Apart from Kaliakra, he's also played in the other "B" group teams Akademik (Sofia), Vidima-Rakovski and Haskovo.

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I have a feeling they might use this lad in the first team, so when he's added with a low rating, he might be a big riser for the future rating changes...but that of course depends on how [or if] Lokomotiv manage to turn around their disastrous [so far] season.

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