A special star turned out for the opening of a UEFA Jubilee mini-pitch in Bulgaria. The national-team coach and Bulgarian playing idol of the recent past, Hristo Stoitchkov, helped to 'christen' the pitch, given as a gift by UEFA under its HatTrick assistance programme.
Pupils, teachers and parents at the Spanish Language School in the Bulgarian capital Sofia watched the official inauguration of the pitch, in the presence of UEFA vice-presidents Per Ravn Omdal and Geoffrey Thompson, and Borislav Mihailov, first vice-president of the Bulgarian Football Union (BFS). In his speech, Mihailov thanked UEFA and its Executive Committee for the gift offered on the occasion of UEFA's 50th birthday.
Meeting an ace
It was a great day for the children, who had the opportunity to greet Stoitchkov – the first person to kick a ball on the mini-pitch. The former FC Barcelona favourite tried his luck from the penalty spot, but goalkeeper Omdal was prepared, and made an excellent save.
The BFS is striving to improve grassroots football facilities on an even wider scale throughout Bulgaria, thanks to UEFA's HatTrick support. Children from all over the country are impatient to see other mini-pitches built, to enable them to play the game they love in ideal surroundings.
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