March 9 – Botev Plovdiv will open its new Hristo Botev Stadium on April 29 with the derby game against Levski. The club said the long awaited renovation will see the stadium open with fully covered stands and 18,500 seats.
The construction of the stadium in Plovdiv has been dragging on for ten years. During this period, Botev have played their home games at their training base on the outskirts of the city.
German Chistyakov, executive director of Botev, said the return to Hristo Botev stadium will make the club more sustainable and independent. He revealed that currently the ‘yellow and black’ have financial difficulties but are expecting a loan to be available in the coming days to the problems of recent months.
“I want to explain why we are in a hurry to move to the new stadium. After so many years of waiting, I am amazed how such a question can be asked. I myself have been waiting for this move for a whole year and I am tired. Botev and the fans have been waiting for it for a whole decade. I think they all deserve to go back to their home faster,” said Chistyakov.
“This is the emotional side of things, but there is also a business issue. The sooner we start using the stadium, the sooner we’ll run into the problems this move brings. When someone moves to a new residence there are always problems, and we are moving to a new huge facility. Therefore, if we move now, we will be able to successfully prepare for the next season.”
“And another important reason – the commissioning of the new stadium will also inject fresh financial resources into the club. This will make Botev a more sustainable club and less dependent on the owner Anton Zingarevich (former owner of Reading). There is also another emotional argument – at this historical moment, we all – club, players and fans – must be together,” continued Chistyakov.
“We must direct our efforts to precisely this relocation. We are a football club, we are not construction supervisors, and we proceed from a simple postulate – the moment the state issues Аct 16 and we receive a license from the Bulgarian Football Union, we will have the full rights to use the stadium and invite all the fans.”
Chistyakov said that new stadium will generate new income that will be funnelled directly into the club and further investment in the stadium to enable it to get licenses for European games. Failure to move into the stadium will mean another rebudgeting.
Contact the writer of this story, Aleksander Krassimirov, at moc.l1708479371labto1708479371ofdlr1708479371owedi1708479371sni@o1708479371fni1708479371