SOFIA (Reuters) - Much-traveled winger Martin Petrov has returned to his homeland after agreeing to a move to CSKA Sofia, the 31-times Bulgarian champions said on Wednesday.
The 34-year-old, capped 90 times by Bulgaria between 1999 and 2011, left CSKA to join Swiss club Servette in 1998 and then played for VfL Wolfsburg, Atletico Madrid, Manchester City, Bolton Wanderers and Espanyol.
“I would like to thank CSKA’s management and coach Stoycho Mladenov,” an emotional Petrov, who signed a contract until the end of the season, told a news conference at the Bulgarska Armiya stadium.
“Two weeks ago, I was ready to announce my retirement and I even said this to my wife.”
CSKA, chasing their first league title since 2008, are fourth in the standings with 26 points from 14 matches, five points behind leaders Litex Lovech.
“I‘m ready to play for CSKA even if they’re in the third division. This is the only club I want to play for,” crowd favorite Petrov added. “I talked to (former CSKA players) Stiliyan (Petrov) and (Dimitar) Berbatov and they wished me luck.”
CSKA’s chief executive Alexander Todorov added: “As a CSKA fan, I dreamed about the return of Martin and Berbatov at CSKA. So, we achieved 50 percent of it.”
Reporting by Angel Krasimirov, editing by Pritha Sarkar