Belarus Humiliates Bulgaria 1-0 in Friendly

Sports | August 11, 2011, Thursday // 08:06|  views

Sergey Kislyak scored the only goal in the match against Bulgaria from a rebound in the 33rd minute. Photo by Action Images

Belarus national football squad put to shame Bulgaria and its German coach Lothar Matthaeus after defeating it 1:0 in a friendly game late on Wednesday.

The team of Belarus was in control of the game during most of the time thanks to the Bulgarians' weak performance and can only feel sorry for missing the chance to score more goals.

Sergey Kislyak scored the only goal from a rebound in the 33rd minute after Vladislav Stoyanov failed to block Dmitri Verkhovtsov's shot from inside the box.

The home side managed to fend off the Bulgarian attacks and hold on to their lead to claim the victory mainly because of the unimaginative and sluggish game of the Bulgarians.

In Bulgaria experts and fans have attributed the deplorable performance of the squad to the absence of the most experienced pair Stilian and Martin Petrov, who play for Premier League clubs Aston Villa and Bolton Wanderers.

Lothar Matthaeus left them out of the line-up for the friendly with Belarus, saying he wanted to "test new players" and "see new faces in action" before the qualifier against England on September 2.

But he did not hide his disappointment after the defeat in Minsk.

"I am very unhappy," admitted the German. "Not so much with the outcome of the game, but rather with the performance of my team. I'll talk to the players why they played so timidly."

The coach congratulated the team of Belarus over their win and paid respect to their superiority thanks to their better command of the ball and to creating more opportunities to score a goal.

"We should be extremely happy that they did not send at least three hits into the net. On the football field the sun is not always shining and sometimes the clouds come. Tonight there was a pouring rain for the Bulgarian team."

Lothar Matthaeus expressed hopes that the squad will play much better in the upcoming qualifiers against England on September 2 in Sofia and on September 6 in Switzerland.

The defeat by Belarus comes just days after Bulgarian officials announced the former German international star will be given the chance to extend his contract and negotiate new terms in the coming days.

The much-traveled Matthaeus replaced in September 2010 Stanimar Stoilov, who quit after Euro 2012 qualifying defeats to England, and more damagingly, Montenegro.

Lothar Matthaeus signed a one-year deal with an option for two more years at the helm.

So far, though, Matthaeus' coaching career hasn't come close to emulating his glory days on the pitch.

His biggest challenge was to try to salvage Bulgaria's hopes of qualifying for Euro 2012 and though this has proved to be mission impossible, reports say the country wants to keep the German coach after that too.

Bulgaria was handed a tricky test in the World Cup draw at the end of July and will face four-time champions Italy, Denmark, the Czech Republic, Armenia and Malta.

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Tags: Malta, Armenia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Italy, 2012, euro, Petrov, Martin, Stilian, England, Sergey Kislyak, coach, German, friendly, Minsk, Belarus, Bulgaria, Matthaeus, Lothar, Aston Villa, Bolton Wanderers


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