Mihaylov playing for Bulgaria in 2011
|Full name||Nikolay Borislavov Mihaylov|
|Date of birth||28 June 1988|
|Place of birth||Sofia, Bulgaria|
|Height||1.94 m (6 ft 4 1⁄2 in)|
|2007–2010||→ Twente (loan)||6||(0)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 21:22, 14 August 2013 (UTC).
† Appearances (Goals).
Mihaylov's father is Borislav Mihaylov, the player with the most international appearances for Bulgaria (after Stilyan Petrov) and head of the Bulgarian Football Union, and his grandfather was Biser Mihaylov, who also played in goal for Levski in the 1960s.
Talented Mihaylov started as a youngster with home country top team Levski Sofia, making his full 90 minutes debut at the age of just 17 years old in the UEFA cup match against Auxerre. He nevertheless wasn't popular with their fans. Mikhaylov's poor performances in some matches, particularly his blunder in the Champions League game against Werder Bremen on 31 October 2006, provoked a negative campaign among Levski supporters who associated his career with protection from his influential father.
Mihaylov was acquired by Liverpool as a talent, whom might become their first team keeper in the future. As at that time Liverpool's first choice keeper was Pepe Reina with Charles Itandje as back up. And by 14 July it became clear that the transfer had hit a problem; Mihaylov wouldn't qualify for a British work permit. As a consequence the Bulgarian U-21 International joined FC Twente on a one year loan. At FC Twente is the 19-year old Mihaylov to compete with Sander Boschker and Cees Paauwe for first team action. Although not playing any matches for the first team, Twente did recognize his talent and in 2008 they extended his loan with a year to August 2009.
On 27 August 2008 finally made his debut for FC Twente in their 4–0 defeat to Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium in the second leg of the third qualifying round for the UEFA Champions League and went on to make his Eredivisie debut in a 1–1 draw at Roda on 30 August 2008. On 14 March 2009, Mihaylov made his second appearance for Twente in the Dutch league against Willem II, playing the full 90 minutes and earning himself a booking, managing to keep a clean sheet in Twente's 2:0 away win. On 29 July 2009, Mihaylov came on as a substitute for midfielder Kenneth Perez, following the dismissal of starting keeper Sander Boschker in the 27th minute of Twente's away game against Sporting CP in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League third qualifying round. He stopped the penalty taken by João Moutinho and made a number of key saves to keep the scores level at 0:0. Mihaylov played the full 90 minutes in the return leg and was not at fault for the Portuguese side's last-minute equalizing goal, which allowed Sporting CP to advance on the away goals rule.
FC Twente had become impressed with Michaylov, not only his talent, but also his progress did convince them. And after several year of being loaned out to FC Twente, on 5 February 2010 he officially was transferred for a fee of €1.8m from Liverpool F.C. to FC Twente. The 21-year old Bulgarian keeper signed a contract for three years with the Dutch club.
At the 2010/2011 season, he has established himself as the starting goalkeeper for FC Twente. Having played in the Champions League, Mihaylov impressed with great appearances in the competition that season, among others by stopping a penalty-shot. In the Champions League FC Twente drew to play against his "nightmare" club Werder, as it were mentioned by the Bulgarian media. He only conceded one goal in the two matches played against Werder. With further appearances against Tottenham Hotspur and the previous year's Champions League winner FC Internazionale Milano in the group, FC Twente managed on their debut in the Champions League nevertheless to end at third place, allowing continuation in the UEFA Europa League. FC Twente was defeated in the quarterfinals by Villareal, after having defeated Rubin Kazan and Zenit.
Mihaylov was recently quoted saying that Liverpool now have retained an option to buy him back from Twente, as he has played enough games for his native country's national team to qualify for a work permit.
On 23 December 2011, Mihaylov attended a ceremony in Sofia, where he was honoured with the Bulgarian Footballer of the Year award (Stiliyan Petrov and Dimitar Berbatov came second and third respectively). The last Bulgarian goalkeeper to have received this distinction is his father Borislav Mihailov.
Mihaylov made his senior international debut in the 5–1 defeat by Scotland in the Kirin Cup in Japan in May 2006. On 12 August 2009, he earned his second cap, playing the full 90 minutes in a friendly match against Latvia, which Bulgaria won 1:0. Mihaylov did well to parry a dangerous Vitālijs Astafjevs shot in the second half, but was hardly tested during the game. He earned his third cap on 10 October 2009, after replacing injured Dimitar Ivankov in the 1:4 away loss to Cyprus in a World Cup qualifier. Mihaylov was the starting goalkeeper for Bulgaria during the country's first two reasonably unsuccessful Euro 2012 qualifiers.
PFC Levski Sofia
- Bulgarian A PFG : 2 times 2005–06, 2006–07,
- Bulgarian Cup: 1 time 2004–05
- Bulgarian Supercup: 1 time 2005
- Runners-up :
- Bulgarian A PFG: 1 time 2004–05
- Bulgarian Supercup : 1 time 2006
- "Serie A – Mihaylov set for Viola". Yahoo! Sport. 8 June 2007. Retrieved 27 June 2007.[dead link]
- "Liverpool capture keeper Mihaylov". BBC Sport. 27 June 2007. Retrieved 27 June 2007.
- "Passport holds key as Lucas Leiva waits to join up with Liverpool". Article in the Liverpool Echo. 14 July 2007. Retrieved 14 July 2007.
- "Mihaylov joins FC Twente on loan". BBC Sport. 23 August 2007. Retrieved 3 June 2009.
- "Twente manages 0:0 against Sporting". UEFA com. 29 July 2009. Retrieved 30 July 2009.
- "Liverpool FC sell Nikolay Mihaylov to FC Twente for £1.5million". Liverpool Daily Post. 4 February 2010. Retrieved 5 February 2010.
- "Официално: Ники Михайлов детронира Бербатов за Футболист на годината". Топспорт.бг. 23 December 2011. Retrieved 24 December 2011.
- (Bulgarian)(English) Official website
- Nikolay Mihaylov career stats at Soccerbase
- (Dutch) Player profile at Voetbal International
- (Bulgarian)Profile et Levski.bg
- (Bulgarian)Profile et LevskiSofia.info
- Nikolay Mihaylov at National-Football-Teams.com