Saturday, October 1, 2011
Hristo the Great! The Most Underrated Football Scorer of His Time
Of all the great scorers of the past 20 years in soccer, perhaps the most dominating was Hristo Stoichkov. In this single aspect of scoring the ball, Stoichkov was one, if not the most feared player of all time. Combined with his explosive acceleration and speed dribbling, as well as his relentless attitude and unpredictable shots at goal he became one of the greatest football players of all time. For some reason, he is not in the discussion of the top players of last 20 years or so, maybe because comes from a relatively small country, Bulgaria, or for his fiery attitude, but Hristo is not as remembered as people might think he was. Let's face it, during the 1994 World Cup he single handedly led Bulgaria to the brink of the championship match, barely losing to Italy 1-2.
However, for his outstanding play during the 1994 world cup he was awarded the Golden Boot for being the most prolific scorer of the tournament. Already by then ,Stoichkov was gaining steam as one of the top players as he led his club team, Barcelona to win the Champions League in 1992, and the Spanish Primera Division championship four years in a row. After finishing his playing career playing in the United States, Stoichkov returned to Bulgaria to coach the national team, and after that stint did not go so well, he retired from the sport for good. Hristo Stoichkov still remains a very popular figure, throughout the world, particularly in his native Bulgaria where people still remember his heroic run during the 1994 world cup.