Krasimir Balakov

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Krasimir Balakov
Krasimir Balakov 1.JPG
Balakov in 2014
Personal information
Full name Krasimir Genchev Balakov
Date of birth (1966-03-29) 29 March 1966 (age 55)
Place of birth Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria
Height 1.76 m (5 ft 9 in)
Position(s) Attacking midfielder
Senior career*
1983–1990 Etar Veliko Tarnovo 142 (35)
1991–1995 Sporting CP 138 (43)
1995–2003 VfB Stuttgart 236 (54)
2005 VFC Plauen 1 (0)
National team
1984–1987 Bulgaria U21 29 (3)
1988–2003 Bulgaria 92 (16)
Teams managed
2003–2005 VfB Stuttgart (assistant)
2005 VFC Plauen (player-manager)
2006–2007 Grasshopper
2007–2008 St. Gallen
2008–2010 Chernomorets Burgas
2011–2012 Hajduk Split
2012 1. FC Kaiserslautern
2014–2015 Litex Lovech
2018–2019 Etar Veliko Tarnovo
2019 Bulgaria
2020–2021 CSKA 1948
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Krasimir Genchev Balakov (Bulgarian : Красимир Генчев Балъков, pronounced  [krɐsiˈmir ˈbaɫɐkof] ; born 29 March 1966) is a Bulgarian professional football manager and former player who is the head coach of Bulgarian club CSKA 1948. A former attacking midfielder, he was a key member of the Bulgarian national team that finished fourth in the 1994 FIFA World Cup. [1] He is considered as second only to Hristo Stoichkov among Bulgarian footballers of his generation.


Club career

Balakov began his club career at the local Etar Veliko Tarnovo, before transferring to Portugal's Sporting Clube de Portugal in 1990, playing alongside future Ballon D'Or recipient Luís Figo, his compatriot Yordanov, and future two-time Champions League winner Paulo Sousa. Though Sporting had a quality squad, Balakov only managed to win the 1994–95 Portuguese Cup during his time at the club. In 1995, he transferred to Germany's VfB Stuttgart where he won two UEFA Intertoto Cups (2000 and 2002) and a DFB-Pokal (1997), before retiring in 2003 - the same year that he called time on an international career which had spanned 15 years and 92 caps. As an attacking midfielder Balakov formed a successful attacking partnership with strikers Fredi Bobic and Giovane Élber at Stuttgart. The trio were known as the "magic triangle". He was voted as Stuttgart's best player of all time. He stayed at Stuttgart until retiring as a player in 2003, although he did make a comeback as a player two years later when he made a single appearance as player-manager of VFC Plauen. [2]

Coaching career

The year after he retired, Krasimir became assistant coach of the club he had just retired from, VfB Stuttgart. He stayed in this position for two years before deciding to become a player-manager at VFC Plauen, where he remained for just a short time.

He had been appointed on 16 January 2006 as a manager of Grasshopper Club Zürich to replace Hanspeter Latour who left for 1. FC Köln. Balakov managed to win the Intertoto Cup, thus qualified the club to the UEFA Cup for 2006–07 season.

He had been appointed on 29 October 2007 as a manager of FC St. Gallen to replace Rolf Fringer. [3] Three days before the season ended, he was fired by the club management.

In December 2008, he became manager of PFC Chernomorets Burgas in his homeland, taking over from Dimitar Dimitrov, after also having considered an offer to coach the national team of his country. [4] On 6 December 2010, he was released from PFC Chernomorets Burgas after mutual consent, following a change in the long-term vision for the club by the owner Mitko Sabev. [5]

On 27 May 2011, it was announced that Balakov would take over the helm of Croatian club Hajduk Split. [6]

On 22 March 2012, Balakov was appointed the manager of 1. FC Kaiserslautern. [7] He was sacked on 17 May 2012, after being unable to prevent Kaiserslautern's relegation to the 2. Bundesliga. [8] He subsequently continued his career as manager in his country.

On 4 January 2018, he was announced as the new manager of Etar Veliko Tarnovo with Stanislav Genchev, Iliyan Kiryakov and Kaloyan Chakarov as first team coaches. [9]

On 14 May 2019, he was named as the new manager of the Bulgaria national football team. [10]

In October 2019, Balakov was replaced as manager of the national team by Georgi Dermendzhiev after resigning from his role following the backlash over his denial of alleged fan racism aimed at members of the England team in a Euro 2020 qualifying match as well as a continued string of unsatisfactory results. [11] He took over as manager of CSKA 1948 in June 2020. [12] In late August 2020, Balakov's duties were extended to cover the organizational management as well, with assistant Yordan Yurukov becoming more actively involved in the training process. [13] However, the latter resigned on 22 September, [14] leaving Balakov to be the sole one in charge of the team.

International career

Balakov made 92 appearances for Bulgaria, between 1988 and 2003 (one of the best totals in national history) and scored 16 goals.[ citation needed ] He made his debut on 2 November 1988, in the 1–1 draw with Denmark in a qualifying match for the 1990 FIFA World Cup, coming on as a late second half substitute for Hristo Stoichkov. [15] Other than the 1994 FIFA World Cup, he also played for his country at Euro 1996 and the 1998 FIFA World Cup. At age 37 he played in the qualifications for Euro 2004 to help his teammates qualify but retired from football before the final stage in Portugal.

International goals

Scores and results list Bulgaria's goal tally first. [16] [17] [18] [19]
1.14 May 1992 Olympiastadion, Helsinki, Finland Flag of Finland.svg  Finland 1–03-0 1994 World Cup qualifier
2.9 September 1992 Vasil Levski National Stadium, Sofia, Bulgaria Flag of France.svg  France 2–02–0 1994 World Cup qualifier
3.11 November 1992 Saint-Ouen, Paris, France Flag of Portugal.svg  Portugal 1–11-2 Friendly match
4.19 January 1994 SDCCU Stadium, San Diego, United States Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico 1–11–1 Friendly match
5.16 November 1994 Vasil Levski National Stadium, Sofia, Bulgaria Flag of Moldova.svg  Moldova 2–14–1 Euro 1996 qualifier
6.29 March 1995 Vasil Levski National Stadium, Sofia, Bulgaria Flag of Wales (1959-present).svg  Wales 1–03–1 Euro 1996 qualifier
7.26 April 1995 Stadionul Republican, Chişinău, Moldova Flag of Moldova.svg  Moldova 1–03–0 Euro 1996 qualifier
8.1 September 1996 Ramat Gan Stadium, Ramat Gan, Israel Flag of Israel.svg  Israel 1–01–2 1998 World Cup qualifier
9.8 October 1996 Stade Josy Barthel, Luxembourg City, Luxembourg Flag of Luxembourg.svg  Luxembourg 1–02–1 1998 World Cup qualifier
10.14 December 1996 Tsirio Stadium, Limassol, Cyprus Flag of Cyprus.svg  Cyprus 2–13–1 1998 World Cup qualifier
11.8 June 1997 Neftochimik Stadium, Burgas, Bulgaria Flag of Luxembourg.svg  Luxembourg 3–04–0 1998 World Cup qualifier
12.28 March 2001 Balgarska Armia Stadium, Sofia, Bulgaria Ulster Banner.svg  Northern Ireland 1–04–3 2002 World Cup qualifier
13.15 August 2001 Balgarska Armia Stadium, Sofia, Bulgaria Flag of North Macedonia.svg Macedonia 1–01-0 Friendly match
14.21 August 2002 Georgi Asparuhov Stadium, Sofia, Bulgaria Flag of Germany.svg  Germany 2–12-2 Friendly match
15.16 October 2002 Vasil Levski National Stadium, Sofia, Bulgaria Flag of Andorra.svg  Andorra 2–02-1 Euro 2004 qualifier

Managerial statistics

As of 18 October 2019
Grasshopper Club Zürich 16 January 200621 May 2007 Swiss Super League 53191816035.857154+17
UEFA Cup 12624050.002118+3
Chernomorets Burgas 14 December 20086 December 2010 Bulgarian A Professional Football Group 60291615048.337954+25
Bulgarian Cup 2101050.0052+3
Hajduk Split 31 May 201122 March 2012 Prva HNL 221354059.094217+25
Croatian Cup 4301075.0094+5
UEFA Cup 2002000.0002–2
1. FC Kaiserslautern 22 March 201217 May 2012 Bundesliga 8107012.50718–11
Litex Lovech 27 May 201411 July 2015 Bulgarian A Professional Football Group 311669051.614932+17
Bulgarian Cup 5311060.0097+2
Europa League 6231033.3386+2
Etar Veliko Tarnovo 4 January 201814 May 2019 First Professional Football League 52241018046.156556+9
Bulgarian Cup 3210066.6761+5
Bulgaria national football team 14 May 201918 October 2019 UEFA Euro 2020 qualifying Group A 5014000.00315-12
Friendly 1001000.0013-2
Career totalsLeague2261025569045.13313231+82
National League Cup14923064.292914+15
European League Cup20857040.002926+3



Etar Veliko Tarnovo

Sporting CP

VfB Stuttgart



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  1. da Cunha, Pedro Jorge (28 March 2019). "Balakov: «Vivi ao lado da Luz e espiei muitos treinos do Benfica»". (in Portuguese). Retrieved 7 December 2020.
  2. Stevenson, Jonathan (2 September 2010). "Bulgarians remain in shadow of class of '94". BBC. Retrieved 30 June 2014.
  3. "Krassimir Balakov neuer Cheftrainer" (in German). Archived from the original on 14 February 2008. Retrieved 29 October 2007.
  4. "Балъков между Бургас и националния отбор. Бившият играч на Щутгарт преговаря с Черноморец". 11 December 2008. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 19 June 2015.
  5. "Красимир Балъков се раздели с Черноморец (Бургас)". (in Bulgarian). 8 December 2010. Archived from the original on 12 July 2011. Retrieved 24 March 2012.
  6. Jurišić, Bernard (27 May 2011). "Krasimir Balakov novi trener Hajduka". (in Croatian). Retrieved 27 May 2011.
  7. "Balakov više nije trener Hajduka". (in Croatian). Hajduk Split. 22 March 2012. Retrieved 22 March 2012.
  8. "Aus für Balakov nach 57 Tagen". Die Rheinpfalz (in German). 18 May 2012. Archived from the original on 13 June 2013. Retrieved 18 May 2012.
  9. "Революция в Търново: Балъков е новият мениджър на Етър, Генчев остава, Деко е аут". (in Bulgarian). 4 January 2018. Retrieved 5 January 2018.
  10. "Balakov appointed as head coach of Bulgaria national squad". 14 May 2019. Retrieved 9 September 2019.
  11. Ben Church. "Bulgaria soccer coach resigns following racist abuse of England team". CNN. Retrieved 23 October 2019.
  12. "Красимир Балъков е новият треньор на ЦСКА 1948". 2 June 2020. Retrieved 5 June 2020.
  13. "ЦСКА 1948 с официална позиция за Красимир Балъков". 31 August 2020. Retrieved 28 October 2020.
  14. "Йордан Юруков напуска ФК ЦСКА 1948!". 22 September 2020. Retrieved 28 October 2020.
  15. "Match log for Krasimir Balakov". Retrieved 20 October 2020.
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Sporting positions
Preceded by
Hristo Stoichkov
Bulgaria captain
Succeeded by
Stiliyan Petrov