Hristo Stoitchkov Accused of Punching Journalist at Chicago Fire Party

Hristo Stoitchkov Accused of Punching Journalist at Chicago Fire PartyHristo Stoitchkov's fiery on-field manner helped him become one of the greatest players of his era, but the Bulgarian's temper could land him in trouble with the law.

Stoitchkov is accused of punching a journalist at a party in Chicago, Ill. Chicago police are investigating the matter, according to the Associated Press.

The alleged incident took place at the Chicago Fire's 15th anniversary gala on Monday night.

Svetlozar Momchilov, owner and editor-in-chief of Bulgaria Now, asked Stoitchkov for an interview, and Stoitchkov punched him in response, according to a complaint filed with the police.

"It's now up to the alleged victim … to request a warrant if he wants to pursue the matter further," the AP reports.

Bulgarian newspaper Trud reports Stoitchkov has denied the charge.

Stoitchkov currently manages Bulgarian club Litex Lovech. He played for Chicago from 2000-02, and was in town for the team's celebration.

Stoitchkov is best known for his days as a player for FC Barcelona (1990-95, 96-98), when he won five La Liga titles, three Spanish Cups and the European Cup (present-day UEFA Champions League) in 1992. He won the European Footballer of the Year award in 1994 after leading Bulgaria to a third-place finish at that summer's FIFA World Cup.

The 46-year-old has been accused of violence in the past. In 2003, he broke a college student's leg while playing in a practice game for DC United. The student sued Stoitchkov in 2006, and the case was settled out of court.

In 2008, Stoitchkov was accused of attacking a Bulgarian photographer at a restaurant in Barcelona.

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Photo via Twitter/@gab_omar

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