Middlesbrough’s Gary Gill has been in Bulgaria and reportedly saw CSKA Sofia beat Vitosha Bistritsa on Saturday.
Boro are understood to be on the lookout for fresh talent from the former Eastern Bloc nation, part of the European Union since 2007.
It is claimed that Gill watched at least two matches, including an Under-19s fixture, but his presence at CSKA’s 6-1 top-flight win over Vitosha was confirmed by Bulgarian news agency BTA.
CSKA defender Bozhidar Chorbadzhiyski, 22, is understood to have impressed with two goals as the Army club moved into second place in the table.
Other players rumoured to be attracting interest from abroad are left-back Anton Nendyalkov, midfielder Krystian Malinov, winger Kiril Despodov and Brazilian striker Fernando Karanga.
“There are no offers for Chorbadzhiyski at this stage, as publications appeared on the internet,” commented CSKA.