Bulgarian champions CSKA Sofia have been excluded from next season’s Champions League after failing to meet licensing criteria.
“CSKA will not participate in the 2008-2009 UEFA’s Champions League as this is a final decision,” the Bulgarian Football Union said in a statement.
CSKA won their 31st Bulgarian league title this season and earned a place in the Champions League’s third qualifying round but could not meet the BFU’s Licensing Commission conditions.
CSKA president Alexandar Tomov accepted responsibility for his team’s failure and announced his resignation.
“I have to do that,” Tomov told reporters. “It is me and only me who is to blame.”
“I’m not going to blame any of my subordinates because I’m the leading figure and everyone stares at me.
“I will continue helping the club in the future,” Tomov said.
Tomov said in a statement on CSKA’s official Web site he would be replaced by the chief executive Emil Kostadinov, a former CSKA player.
CSKA could be also thrown out of the Bulgarian top flight and forced to play in the country’s amateur third division.