rifon Ivanov was born in Gorna Lipnitza, located in the northeast Bulgarian district of Veliko Turnovo.
He began his professional career with the local club Etar at the age of 18.
In the very same team, he played alongside with Krasimir Balakov, Ilian Kiriakov and a few other talented footballers.
By his 24th birthday, Trifon gets drafted by elite Bulgarian club, CSKA Sofia.
With CSKA, Ivanov wins the Bulgarian championship in 1989, 1990, and 1992. He also takes the Bulgarian Cup for 1989.
Trifon earned even more attention with CSKA by playing in international competition next to Hristo Stoichkov, Emil Kostadinov, and Luboslav Penev.
In 1991, Spanish club Real Betis purchased the defender but his presence was of little help as his new team struggled in the Primera Division.
Disatisfied by his reportedly undisciplined attitude, the club sells Trifon over to the obscure Swiss Xamax Neuchatel.
By his second season at Xamax, Trifon's outspokenness gets him in trouble again.
After a poor result, he openly criticizes Coach Gilbert Gress telling him that he "knows nothing about football."
Xamax quickly release the Bulgarian who is picked up by his former club CSKA.
Just a few months later, in the summer of 1995, Trifon is transfered over to Austrian Rapid Wien for the mere $800,000.
In Rapid, success comes right away as Ivanov leads his team to an Austrian title and the Cup Winners Cup final (where PSG beats them.)
The following year, Rapid qualify for the Champions League, but after some errors by the Bulgarian he gets in yet another dispute with the club coach.
Ernst Dokupil decides to release Ivanov and he joins the local rival Austria Wien.
After little success at Austria Wien, Trifon eventually settles back at CSKA.
He rejoined his old club in order to prepare for the upcoming World Cup 1998.
After the summer of 1998, he decides to put an end to his competitive career
and returns to his home in Austria. Trifon entertains himself by playing in the
Austrian 3rd division with FAC Avanti, a club owned by his business associate
Hannes Nouza. Both of them are successful contractors in the oil industry.
In the Bulgarian national squad, Trifon mesmerized a worldwide audience with
his on-pitch antics and spectacular tackles.
At the 1994 World Cup, he played a crucial role in Bulgaria's forth place finish.
In 1996 he was nominated for the Golden Ball and was selected as the Top Footballer
of Bulgaria. Trifon participated at Euro 1996 and later had a huge part in Bulgaria's
road to World Cup 1998. His goal against Russia in the qualifications ensured a spot
for Bulgaria at France `98.
Trifon is an extremely agile defender, who has the ability to confront and intimidate
Not all of his tackles are clean, but they are always spectacular and entertaining.
Ivanov is not only a footballer but also an extravagant showman.
He has a very hard long-range kick and many.
Keepers fear him because he often comes up with shots out of the blue.
Maintaining a peak physical condition is a must for his particular position, but at the end of his career Trifon suffered maintaining it.
Outside of the pitch, Ivanov is known as a sensitive and mild-mannered individual.
There are many myths about him being a rambunctious character but most of these