Lyuboslav Penev

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Lyuboslav Penev
Lyuboslav Penev 1.JPG
Personal information
Full name Lyuboslav Mladenov Penev
Date of birth (1966-08-31) 31 August 1966 (age 48)
Place of birth Sofia, Bulgaria
Height 1.88 m (6 ft 2 in)
Playing position Centre forward
Club information
Current team
Bulgaria
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1984–1989 CSKA Sofia 101 (80)
1989–1995 Valencia 167 (67)
1995–1996 Atlético Madrid 37 (16)
1996–1998 Compostela 69 (32)
1998–1999 Celta Vigo 32 (14)
2000–2001 CSKA Sofia 22 (8)
2002 Lokomotiv Plovdiv 4 (0)
Total 432 (217)
National team
1987–1998 Bulgaria 62 (13)
Teams managed
2009–2010 CSKA Sofia
2010–2011 Litex Lovech
2011– Bulgaria
2014 Botev Plovdiv
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

Lyuboslav Mladenov Penev (Bulgarian: Любослав Пенев; born 31 August 1966) is a former Bulgarian footballer who is currently manages the Bulgarian national football team.

Career[edit]

Penev's first professional team was CSKA Sofia of the Bulgarian capital. He made his first team debut in 1984, when he was only 18 years old. CSKA of the late 1980s was the football "alma mater" to several Bulgarian players like Hristo Stoichkov who made it to the international top in the 1990s. During those days Lubo's teammates included defender Trifon Ivanov, winger Emil Kostadinov, and striker Hristo Stoichkov. With CSKA Penev won the Bulgarian League twice; in 1987 and 1989) and the Bulgarian Cup three times in 1987, 1988 and 1989. He was also voted as the Bulgarian footballer of 1988.

In 1989, after reaching stardom in the Bulgarian game, he took an important step in his career by moving to the Spanish League. In Primera Penev played for four different clubs: Valencia CF, Atlético Madrid, SD Compostela and Celta Vigo. The highlight of the Spanish years was the 1995–1996 season with Atlético, when the club conquered both the league championship and the Spanish Cup. Penev was the most efficient player of the "double squad" by scoring 32 goals in 44 games (including both league and cup matches).

Position[edit]

Penev's favourite position on the pitch was centre forward. With an impressive stature of 188 cm, he roamed as a target man dominating in air battles. In addition to his abilities as a goalscorer, Penev was also known for his fighting spirit both on and off the pitch.

International career[edit]

Penev represented Bulgaria in Euro '96 in England and in the 1998 World Cup in France. He could not take part in the 1994 World Cup, as he had been diagnosed with testicular cancer since the beginning of 1994. For the same reason he was replaced by Nasko Sirakov during the match Bulgaria vs Romania at UEFA Euro 1996 in England.

CSKA Sofia

Valencia CF

Atlético Madrid

Coaching career[edit]

In March 2009, he succeeded his uncle Dimitar Penev as manager of CSKA Sofia and under his guidance the team qualified for the group stages of the UEFA Europa League, defeating FC Dynamo Moscow – 2–1 on aggregate. On 6 November 2009, he gave his resignation, after a 1–3 loss to Swiss side FC Basel due to a conflict with the club's owners. CSKA finished 4th in the group behind Roma, Basel and Fulham. CSKA won its single point in the opening game against the future finalist Fulham (1–1 after a good strike from Michel Platini and a mistake from CSKA goalkeeper Ivan Karadzhov). However, Penev's resignation was not accepted, because the CSKA fans wanted him to stay.

The club was leader in the Bulgarian championship before the last round, when Litex Lovech took the leadership. On 13 January 2010, after another clash with the owners, he was fired. After the lost game against Minyor Pernik he withdrew nine players from training sessions for breaking the club's rules, this led to the conflict with the owners.[1]

During the summer many rumours connected him with a transfer to a Spanish clubs (mainly from Liga Adelante, but from Liga BBVA sides too), but he remained a free agent. On 2 September 2010, he became manager of Litex Lovech and won the 2010–2011 A PFG Group championship.

On 23 October 2011, he resigned as Litex Lovech coach and was appointed manager of the national team. In his first game in charge, on 29 February 2012, Bulgaria earned a 1–1 draw away to Hungary. On 26 May 2012 his team defeated the runners-up of the 2010 FIFA World Cup Netherlands in Amsterdam by a score of 2–1. Under his management, Bulgaria's fortunes picked up and the team put in credible performances against Italy, Denmark and the Czech Republic in the qualifications for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. As a result, Bulgaria climbed from 96th in the FIFA World rankings when Penev took over, to 40th in November 2012. Currently, Bulgaria stand second in Group B on 13 points. Their next game was against the Czech Republic in Sofia on 15 October 2013, a match which Bulgaria lost 0–1.

On 1 November 2013, Lyuboslav Penev extended his contract with the national team of Bulgaria for two years. During this period, he will be able to qualify the team for the UEFA Euro 2016 in France.[2]

On 6 June 2014, Penev was unveiled as the new manager of Botev Plovdiv, emphasizing that his new duties will not in any way affect his commitment to the national team.[3] The sudden financial troubles of the club, however, led to the quick termination of his contract in early July after only one game (4:0 home victory against Libertas at the first qualifying round for UEFA Europa League).[4]

Manager[edit]

Team Nat From To Record
G W D L Win % F A Goal +/-
CSKA Sofia Bulgaria March 2009 January 2010 25 18 4 3 72.00 49 13 +36
Litex Lovech Bulgaria September 2010 October 2011 41 28 7 6 68.29 72 25 +47
Bulgaria Bulgaria October 2011 Present 18 7 5 6 41.18 22 17 +5
As of 15 October 2013, includes all official matches – Bulgarian League, Bulgarian Cup (+ overtime) and international tournament games.

Personal life[edit]

Lyuboslav Penev was born on 31 August 1966 in Sofia, Bulgaria, the only son of Mladen Penev and his wife, a qualified nurse. He is the nephew of former footballer and coach Dimitar Penev. During the 1990s, Lubo Penev was in a relationship with supermodel Daniela Serdanova from whom he has one son named also Lyuboslav.[citation needed] He has also been in an affair with weather girl Desislava Banova.[citation needed] Since 2006, he has been living with Kristina, from whom he has a second son and they are living in Sofia, the capital of the country.[citation needed]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Awards
Preceded by
Bulgaria Nikolay Iliev
Bulgarian Footballer of the Year
1988
Succeeded by
Bulgaria Hristo Stoichkov