Soccer-Rival Bulgarian managers quit after cup tie

SOFIA, March 19 (Reuters) - Botev Plovdiv coach Stanimir Stoilov and Levski Sofia counterpart Antoni Zdravkov both resigned on Wednesday after Botev had beaten Levski to reach the Bulgarian Cup semi-finals.

Despite big-spending Botev winning the second leg 2-0 to win on away goals, Stoilov said he was quitting because of the "negative atmosphere" created by home fans.

"I don't want to participate in the destruction of a multi- million project," Stoilov told reporters.

"(Fans) negativism can prevent such a project happening."

His departure was followed by Levski's Zdravkov who said: "I'm very disappointed and I'll inform Mr (Todor) Batkov (Levski's owner) that I can't work with players who do not show their football skills on the field."

The 26-times Bulgarian champions, who mark their 100th anniversary this year, were hoping to lift their first trophy since 2009.

Botev won three times and drew at home against champions Ludogorets after the winter break to climb to fourth place in the league but fans criticised Stoilov for the team's performances.

Following Botev's 2-1 win over city rivals Lokomotiv on Sunday, supporters issued a declaration, saying that "Stoilov's time at Botev is over." Hundreds of Botev fans called for Stoilov's resignation during the game. (Reporting by Angel Krasimirov, editing by Justin Palmer)