how “Botev” (Plovdiv) and the builder of the stadium came into conflict 2024-02-13 09:42:27


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With mutual accusations of threats, harassment, as well as extortion, the management of “Botev” (Plovdiv) came into conflict with the owner of the company – builder of the “Hristo Botev” stadium, PIMK Iliyan Filipov.

A day ago, on its official website and on social networks, the club released a video with merchandising manager Bozhidar Karadzov and fan Velizar Tsolakidis, presented on the club’s website as “one of the most dedicated and selfless fans”.

Karadjov tells about an incident with Filipov from the summer of 2023, in which the businessman tried to commit suicide, in his words, for “not allowing a lady to enter behind the cash register at a counter where tickets and season passes are sold.” The employee of “Botev” explains that he was kicked and pushed by Filipov.

The “Botev” fan talked about another incident from February 10, 2024, in which the owner of the company that built the stadium threatened him and told him not to “step on his stadium”.

Later, “Botev” distributed a position of the executive director Alexey Kirichek, condemning the actions. “Recently, we witnessed physical aggression against an official in the line of duty. Humiliation and pain were swallowed up for the moment in the name of keeping a good tone with our former partner. But it didn’t work.”

“We want to clearly express our position of support for every single fan who is pressured, humiliated, beaten and repressed not only on the territory of the Hristo Botev stadium, but also outside it. After the actions in question, the evidence of which was handed over to the law enforcement authorities, the electricity supply of the stadium was also tampered with in order to cover up the evidence of this”, the position of the director of “Botev” also states.

“We believe that Bulgaria is a country governed by the rule of law, part of the big European family, where values ​​and understandings far higher than those shown by a group of people who obviously do not accept the development of our club are professed.”

On Tuesday morning, Filipov also issued a statement on his company’s Facebook page. The businessman claims that the club spreads “truths that are only shown when they justify their lies and interests”.

Filipov claims that he was blackmailed by the fan Velizar Tsolakidis, and apologizes for his action, which he justifies with provocation and insults from the other side.

“First, I want to apologize for the way I reacted, and I think my actions are not right and I will bear all the consequences for them. Then again, each person has their tolerance threshold. Apparently in our last meeting with Belisar and his next provocation, the cup overflowed and I succumbed to it, which does not justify me.”

“We have a long-standing conflict with Velizar. This person asked me for 40 thousand BGN to buy some racing car, and not for “sponsorship”, as he claims in the video, but so that “I don’t have a problem with the fans”, and in my correct text stated that he could manipulate them either way”.

“Regarding the situation with Bozhidar Karadjov, this is an attempt to use a different situation from the club in order to seal the so-called scandal,” adds Filipov. “I thought that the dispute with Bozhidar had been settled a long time ago, since we have seen each other and greeted each other. This is evidenced by the fact that more than 6 months have passed since the conflict in question, and he neither sent a signal to the law enforcement authorities, nor did he public domain.”

In his position on social networks, Filipov recalls the case from the end of January, when in Plovdiv four people were detained and accused of participating in an armed organized criminal group, which carried out extortion and coercion of various citizens. Later it became clear that two of them are policemen, one works at “Botev” and another is the head of the security of the owner of the club, Anton Zingarevich.

Last year, the owner of the company PIMK several times got into an argument with the management of “Botev”. This was in the period around the completion of the Hristo Botev Stadium and its opening in April 2023.

Then, in October, the stadium’s turnstile system was removed due to late payment by the club, and Filipov said Botev’s accounts were frozen. At the end of 2023, Filipov took a stance on the management of the club, saying in a TV interview that “he can consolidate business in the city, which would provide 8-9 million for the support of the club”.

In November, the businessman entered into a dispute with the leadership of the Bulgarian Football Union (BFS) regarding the European qualification Bulgaria – Hungary, which was supposed to be played in Plovdiv, and then was moved to Sofia and became the cause of a protest against the football union.

Then Filipov accused two BFS chiefs of making threats.

#Botev #Plovdiv #builder #stadium #conflict

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