Champions League defender Cosmin Moti saves two penalties to send club Ludogorets Razgrad through

With no substitute keeper on the bench, the centre-back stepped up, saving two penalties against Steaua Bucharest - and making himself the hero of Bulgarian side Ludogorets

Footballer Cosmin Moti is likely to be handed the keys to the city of Razgrad – if not to the whole of Bulgaria – after saving two penalties as a stand-in goalkeeper in a shoot-out which saw his club Ludogorets Razgrad through to the main stages of the Champions League tonight.


With the crunch game tied 1-1 at the end of extra time – and Razgrad keeper Vladislav Stoyanov having been sent off for a professional foul with no substitute keepers on the bench – Moti was the outfield player who bravely agreed to take up position between the posts.

But not before putting his team ahead by scoring the first goal himself.

He went on to save the second penalty from opponents Steaua Bucharest and then sealed the game – and his place in history – with a second save after the shoot-out went into sudden death.


Cyncial observers – or those who support Steaua – might point to the fact that Moti appeared to have been some distance off his line when the final penalty was taken. But most will simply enjoy the sort of football fairytale that you just couldn’t make up…