UEFA president Michel Platini has visited Bulgaria and emphasised the excellent ties between UEFA and the Bulgarian Football Union (BFS).
Mr Platini met BFS president Borislav Mihailov, vice-presidents Yordan Lechkov, Mihail Kasabov and Atanas Furnadzhiev, and general secretary Borislav Popov. The president of European football's governing body also held talks with Bulgaria's prime minister Boyko Borisov.
Mr Platini stressed the positive working relationship with the president of the Bulgarian Football Union. Borislav Mihailov is a former international goalkeeper with a record 102 appearances for Bulgaria.
"The only disagreement I may have with Mr Mihailov is that he believes he could save one of my penalties," said Mr Platini. "We are football people and enjoy talking about the game.
"I would like to say I am very happy to be back here in Bulgaria," the UEFA president continued. "In such bilateral meetings with all UEFA member associations, we discuss common topics. We talked about the help and support of UEFA for the development of football, including women's and youth football. We discussed the different UEFA programmes and increased budgets for the football associations across the continent."
Mr Platini also highlighted the governing body's commitment to helping the associations with football infrastructure. The UEFA president underlined that he and the governing body will fight for the good values of the game. "I am president of UEFA and my job is to defend football. The UEFA Executive Committee has declared zero tolerance to all forms of corruption in the game." Mr Platini also urged governments to help UEFA in combating these negative elements.
The UEFA president pointed to the financial help given to the member associations, which he said was earmarked for the development of the game in every UEFA member association. Borislav Mihailov welcomed the positive and fruitful talks with Michel Platini as well as the support given by UEFA through programmes such as the HatTrick assistance scheme.
After a media briefing, Mr Platini, Mr Mihailov and the visiting delegation held talks with the Bulgarian prime minister Boyko Borisov. The talks were constructive and cordial.
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