Georgi Ivanov beats Dimitar Berbatov to Bulgarian FA presidency

March 18 – Former Bulgarian international and Levski Sofia legend Georgi Ivanov-Gonzo is the new president of the Bulgarian Football Union (BFU), beating former Manchester United star Dimitar Berbatov to the post in the first round of voting.

There were seven candidates for the presidential post, but only three realistically had a real chance of winning – Ivanov (pictured), Berbatov and the current acting president, Mihail Kasabov.

Ivanov, has worked as a technical director in the Bulgarian Football Union for the past two years, won the election with 235 votes – one more than the number needed to win in the first round. Berbatov, whose team included Stiliyan Petrov and Martin Petrov, received 181 votes.

The extraordinary general assembly of the Bulgarian Football Union was convened after the previous president Borislav Mihailov resigned at the end of last year following a series of protests against his management and clashes between police and football fans over the management of the federation.

“I am proud to have won in this way. I have an even greater responsibility. Now the more difficult is ahead. We must show that we deserve and are worthy. I invited someone from Dimitar Berbatov’s team to enter the Executive Committee. I regret that no one accepted. Decent people with qualities but they refused. I respect them,” said Ivanov.

“I said I would reach out for unification. The fans will judge us by our work. Our goal is for the fans themselves and the clubs to understand that change has come. There will always be naysayers. We will prove that we are different. We will work transparently. If someone protests from the first day, it is ridiculous and incorrect. We have not started working yet,” he continued.

“When it came to the decisive moment, the clubs chose Georgi Ivanov. We congratulated him. We wished him success. This is the choice of the clubs. We did not see anything irregular in the congress. The clubs made the right choice for them. This is the will of the clubs. Everyone has their own opinion. Let’s give the new president time, he’s got the trust of the clubs,” said Berbatov.

“I’ve got enough to deal with. There’s not always a happy ending in life. We’re walking with our heads held high. We sincerely hope that change has come and there will be no replacement. Let the new president be given time. There is a corrective – the football public. We have nothing to regret. Wherever we go, people will welcome us with a smile. We tried to go in a different direction purely managerially. We did our best.”

Contact the writer of this story, Aleksander Krassimirov, at moc.l1718593905labto1718593905ofdlr1718593905owedi1718593905sni@o1718593905fni1718593905