Hristo Stoichkov says he is “broken” by the death of his former Barcelona coach Johan Cruyff.
Cruyff, who passed away on Thursday at the age of 68, took the Bulgarian to Camp Nou in 1990 as part of a side which quickly became dubbed the ‘Dream Team’ after winning four successive La Liga titles as well as the European Cup in 1992.
Stoichkov was paired with Brazil star Romario in attack – a volatile partnership that terrorised Europe’s best defences.
On learning of Cruyff’s death, Stoichkov told Mundo Deportivo: “I am broken. I want to leave Miami and go to Barcelona to say goodbye to the man who did so much for me. Playing for Barca, winning the Golden Ball… without him none of it would have been possible. He gave me the chance to play with the ‘Dream Team’, to enjoy playing football and win titles.”
Cruyff’ had reportedly been doing well in his battle against cancer, which is why Thursday’s news came as such a shock.
Stoichkov added: “When I was in Barcelona they made me feel optimistic because they said he had made improvements. Now this news is a blow I was not expecting. It is very hard for me and my family. We loved and admired him.
“Johan was unique. He was the man that changed the destiny of Barcelona.”