During the 2003 UEFA Cup final, I became a man


Former Celtic midfielder Stiliyan Petrov has opened up about his time with the Scottish Premiership giants speaking exclusively to FourFourTwo.
The 44-year-old played at Celtic Park from 1999 to 2006, having initially been signed by then-Bhoys head coach John Barnes for £2.8 million from CSKA Sofia.
Petrov played 311 games for Celtic in total, registering 64 goals in that period.
But the Bulgarian pinpoints the 2003 UEFA Cup Final as one of his fondest memories, saying that it was the period in which he ‘became a man’.
John Barnes signed Stylian Petrov to Celtic (Image credit: Getty Images)“What an adventure.
“At Celtic, I became a man and learned what it means to play for a team with your heart.
“Not many players around the world get the chance to feature in a European final, but I did.
Unfortunately we lost in extra time, but we played really well.
“The atmosphere, the build-up… everything was perfect apart from the result,” Petrov said.
“We took on an impressive Porto team that went on to win the Champions League under Jose Mourinho a year later, and couldn’t quite overcome them.

In an exclusive interview with FourFourTwo, former Celtic midfielder Stiliyan Petrov talked candidly about his time playing for the Scottish Premiership’s top team.

The 44-year-old was first signed by then-Boys head coach John Barnes for £2.8 million from CSKA Sofia, and he played at Celtic Park from 1999 to 2006.

64 goals were scored by Petrov during his 311 games for Celtic. The Bulgarian, however, says that his best memories are from the 2003 UEFA Cup Final, when he “became a man.”.

The image credit goes to Getty Images. John Barnes signed Stylian Petrov to Celtic.

What a journey. The trip to that championship game was outstanding,” he informed us. “I grew as a man and discovered what it means to play with your heart for a team at Celtic.”. Everything has to be given.

“I was fortunate enough to be included in a European final, something that not many players worldwide get to experience. Since you’ve worked so hard to get that far, you should treasure those moments. Despite our unfortunate loss in extra time, we played excellently. I still recall how hot it was in Seville that day. “.

In order to advance to the competition’s final at Sevilla’s Estadio Olimpico, Celtic defeated Liverpool in the quarterfinals and defeated Boavista of the Primeira Liga in the semifinals.

Celtic defeated Liverpool under Gerard Houlier in the competition’s quarterfinals (Photo credit: Getty Images).

Although the outcome did not meet Petrov’s expectations, he maintains that the experience was well worth it.

“The mood, the anticipation. Everything was flawless except for the outcome, according to Petrov. “We faced a formidable Porto squad, who went on to win the Champions League under Jose Mourinho a year later, but we were unable to defeat them.”. Though it was not to be our night, we came very close. “.

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