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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old December 2nd, 2005, 06:58 Thread Starter
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AEK, UEFA's team of the week....

http://www.uefa.com/magazine/news/Ki...Id=360380.html

AEK on road to recovery
Friday, 2 December 2005

by Paul Safferfrom Athens

The recent trials of AEK Athens FC are enough to give a chill to any football fan. But having stared into the abyss at the start of 2004, they were rescued by folk hero Demis Nikolaidis and although life has not been easy since there are more than a few glimpses of hope.

Nikolaidis bid
In January 2004, with AEK seemingly spiralling towards bankruptcy, Greek international Nikolaidis launched a takeover bid for the club he had served with distinction at the peak of his playing career. He was the head of a four-man consortium, also containing Nikos Koulis, who had 20 years experience in management consultancy and company restructuring in the United States.

Takeover
Koulis told uefa.com: "I had been an AEK fan for a long time, and in the previous ten years their management had ranged from benign mismanagement to outright fraud. The liabilities had mounted to €180m in debt, including €100m in fines and penalties for manipulating the books. I got involved because I liked the team and it was my area of expertise."

Long road
While it has not been a smooth road since - the new board's attempt to protect the club from their creditors took until November 2004, several months longer than hoped. But rather than disappearing AEK remain one of Greece's leading sides and are becoming an administrative model for others to follow. At the centre has been Nikolaidis, an idol on the pitch, and now off it.

'Leadership talents'
"He combines two aspects that do not usually come together: he was a talented player beloved by the fans, happy to give up lucrative opportunities to play for AEK, and also a very bright person, well read, with leadership talents," Koulis said. "It would have been impossible without Demis's ability to mobilise people and create a dream. He also put in his own money."

Fans' enthusiasm
Supporters certainly responded in style. "We had a spectacular response from the fans," Koulis said. "Before the average gate was 6-7,000, then it went up to 29-30,000." It also changed the atmosphere at matches.

Family atmosphere
"Greek soccer is plagued by violence, and one thing we established early on was to work with fans," he added. "Last year we were the only team not penalised, and we attracted families and turned games into a fiesta. Financially this was attractive and much better than we hoped. There is a thirst among Greek fans to attend games trouble-free."

'Wonderful experience'
The team responded well too and despite losing almost all their previous squad, save for loyal captain Konstantinos Katsouranis, they only just missed out on a UEFA Champions League berth. "Last year was a wonderful experience, this year is back to Planet Earth but much better than it was," said Koulis. Indeed, the club was punished for crowd trouble at newly promoted Atromitos FC and will be again after incidents last weekend at Levadiakos FC, though AEK on principle refuse to appeal the decisions and identified the perpetrators. Their UEFA Cup campaign ended before the group stage and former owners ENIC have challenged AEK's bankruptcy protection in a hearing scheduled for mid-December.

Stadium plan
However, they are second in the league and Nikolaidis is continuing to take the club forward, with plans in place to build a new stadium. Their former Nikos Goumas arena has gone, and with Panathinaikos FC they are lodging in the Athens Olympic stadium, built for athletics rather than football. Koulis said: "The stadium was demolished without a permit, so we have been without it for two years. We are talking to the government about getting some land for building a UEFA-standard stadium, with parking and easy access.” They are also to build a training centre in the Aharnes district of Athens.

Long-term thinking
Thinking has always been long-term for the AEK board. “Demis said in the first press conference that it would be three difficult years, but our objective to build a team that will be competitive in Europe in five years' time - rather like FC Porto, that's the dream. The first step is to stabilise the finances. Then to develop through the academies players we can sell. The only areas we have increased our budget in are security and academies.”

European ambition
But when success comes, AEK are determined that it will be on the European as well as the national stage. "Greece is still parochial, but the market is not just Greece, Athens or Attica, it is Europe," Koulis said. "If we finish above Olympiacos [CFP] and Panathinaikos but then get eliminated in the first round of the UEFA Champions League that would not be a success."

Ultimate goal
He concluded: "We need to succeed on three fronts: financially; the infrastructure, having our own training facilities and stadium and marketing; and football, having a team that can take on the [AC] Milans and Manchester United [FC]s of this world, sometimes winning."


To pio omorfo pragma sto kosmo einai na agapas tin AEK!
Det Vackraste i den har varlden, ar att alska AEK!
Самая прекрасная вещь на свете, это любить АЕК!
La plus belle chose dans le monde est l'amour pour l'AEK!
La cosa piu' bella nel' mondo e' di amare l'AEK!
Dünya'da en güzel şey, AEK aşkı.
A legszebb dolog a világon az AEK iránti imádat.
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old December 2nd, 2005, 14:22
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I guess mentioning the absurdity that is Article 44 would ruin the feel-good, noble image of the article, right?
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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old December 2nd, 2005, 16:55
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Originally Posted by AMOROSO!
I guess mentioning the absurdity that is Article 44 would ruin the feel-good, noble image of the article, right?
Here's a thought. What's so absurd about it? I mean, the way some of you carry on about it you'd think we came up with the law. I mean, many businesses have used it and noone mentions it. Aris used it first and you don't say a thing (funny that??). Don't get me wrong I don't agree with it in the ethical sense, but the fact remains such a law exists. Blame the Greek judiciary on it. How on earth, we got this award is beyond me, especially after the carry on on Sunday.


....oh and another thing did we not convicingly beat some Romanian outfit in a pre season game? I'll leave it at that. Hear from you on Monday.

" The thing is though, no matter how bad your team happens to be, you will still love them. Divorce is not an option in the world of football supporting, it really is a case of death do us part."


AEK till I die!

Ale Viola! FORZA BUTEI!


"I shall always recognise you by the dreadful sword you hold...................."

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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old December 2nd, 2005, 17:16
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If some Aris fan posted something about how well-run his club was, and how their president was a bloody hero, be sure I would mention it. Much like the basketball of PAOK and Aris...

And wow, a PRE-SEASON game! That makes you worthy UEFA Cup contenters then. PAOK has been pathetic in Europe, but at least they made the group stage...
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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old December 2nd, 2005, 21:40 Thread Starter
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Amoroso, Demi didn't run AEK into the ground. The Psomiadides of the world did.

What Demis will do, and what guys like Goumenos cannot do is make AEK a Greek success story in terms of managment and soon enough results.

Do you not agree that right now AEK is the best run Greek club?

To pio omorfo pragma sto kosmo einai na agapas tin AEK!
Det Vackraste i den har varlden, ar att alska AEK!
Самая прекрасная вещь на свете, это любить АЕК!
La plus belle chose dans le monde est l'amour pour l'AEK!
La cosa piu' bella nel' mondo e' di amare l'AEK!
Dünya'da en güzel şey, AEK aşkı.
A legszebb dolog a világon az AEK iránti imádat.
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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old December 3rd, 2005, 10:50
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AEK is the ''healthiest'' greek team at the moment,no doubt about it.You're lucky to have a president that loves the team as a fan himself (he doesn't consider it as strictly business,cold hard maths) and a very good coach(for greek standards),who seems very capable of organising teams outta nowhere.The co-operation between those two is superb,Ivic has his own important place in the area and so the AEK miracle is a fact.
On the other hand,you should consider this:AEK was one step from elimination.When you're about to die,your only care is to stay alive,so your expectations is a lot smaller.For example,AEK was comedy in Europe,but nobody really cared.Standards are lower for sure.Olympiakos and PAO seem to got more problems,cause their fans expect them to be a level up,and when its not happening,everything else looks like a failure.
As time goes by,AEK will be called to do something more than just fight for the title as equal,and then it's gonna be tougher for everyone there.
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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old December 3rd, 2005, 13:44
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Originally Posted by Icarus
Amoroso, Demi didn't run AEK into the ground. The Psomiadides of the world did.
I never said Demis was responsible for AEK's near demolition. I just don't buy the whole thing about him being a saviour when he isn't. Aris is run by two tottaly incompetent idiots and they still saved the team from going bankrupt by using article 44 so THAT is not much of an achievement rather than a ruthless exploitation of former employees and creditors with the blessing of the goverment. I would hate to see clubs like AEK and Aris go bust, but there are other ways to save them rather than **** over people who worked for them. Article 44 was made to save businesses from excessive loan credit from banks, not as a means to not pay former employees what they worked for!

Quote:
What Demis will do, and what guys like Goumenos cannot do is make AEK a Greek success story in terms of managment and soon enough results.
Goumenos has quietly and slowly but effectivelly dragged PAOK out of our debts (which were obviously much, much smaller than AEK's - but then he didn't have to use article 44) and is also building quite a good squad with very, very little money. It's nice to think that he's an incompetent fool, but the fact is that he's done quite a good job so far with very limited resources.

Demis started with NO debts, and minimal expectations. Tough times start now for both him and Ivic (a quite overrated Technical Director if you ask me judging by his job so far).

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Do you not agree that right now AEK is the best run Greek club?
No, that would be Olympiakos. But AEK is very well-run.

Look, Demis might be a jumped up, pretentious little prick, but I do like him and respect him for being one of the few people in football who has morals. I just feel it's too early to label him and his project a total success.
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old December 3rd, 2005, 17:53 Thread Starter
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For example,AEK was comedy in Europe,but nobody really cared.Standards are lower for sure.Olympiakos and PAO seem to got more problems,cause their fans expect them to be a level up,and when its not happening,everything else looks like a failure.
Hello but loosing by 1-0 to Zenit on an unlucky goal is not exactly a comedy. Barca may be Barca, but AEK didn't eat a beating like 5-0 to be a comedy. Zenit is a good club as they are showing in their UEFA cup group.

Amoroso:

Quote:
I never said Demis was responsible for AEK's near demolition. I just don't buy the whole thing about him being a saviour when he isn't. Aris is run by two tottaly incompetent idiots and they still saved the team from going bankrupt by using article 44 so THAT is not much of an achievement rather than a ruthless exploitation of former employees and creditors with the blessing of the goverment. I would hate to see clubs like AEK and Aris go bust, but there are other ways to save them rather than **** over people who worked for them. Article 44 was made to save businesses from excessive loan credit from banks, not as a means to not pay former employees what they worked for!
Firstly, taking AEK out of debt is 1 thing, but making the club to start making money is another.

Bringing in guys like Ivic and Savevski and surroding the club with people who care about it is also another thing altogether.

Making the club financially viable is another thing too.

As for article 44, most of AEK's "debts" were to former owners. How in the fvck can AEK be expected to pay to the people who robbdd from her for years? Seriously now?

Demis is changing Greek football starting with AEK. While PAO and OSFP are happy to continue playing heafty fines, and to continue their usual ways in Europe, Demis takes action against the hooligans in a way they never dreamed of, and Demis has real goals for the club in Europe.

Our training centre is a reality, and our stadium is not far behind.

The Psomiadides and ENIC's of the world could never have done these things for us.

Quote:
Goumenos has quietly and slowly but effectivelly dragged PAOK out of our debts (which were obviously much, much smaller than AEK's - but then he didn't have to use article 44) and is also building quite a good squad with very, very little money. It's nice to think that he's an incompetent fool, but the fact is that he's done quite a good job so far with very limited resources.
PAOK cannot even pay their playes, and nevermind the article 44. PAOK lives game by game, cheque by cheque, AEK has 17,000+ season ticket holders.

Quote:
Demis started with NO debts, and minimal expectations. Tough times start now for both him and Ivic (a quite overrated Technical Director if you ask me judging by his job so far).
AEK's debts are 13 million Euros. FYI.

Quote:

Look, Demis might be a jumped up, pretentious little prick, but I do like him and respect him for being one of the few people in football who has morals. I just feel it's too early to label him and his project a total success.
It will be.

To pio omorfo pragma sto kosmo einai na agapas tin AEK!
Det Vackraste i den har varlden, ar att alska AEK!
Самая прекрасная вещь на свете, это любить АЕК!
La plus belle chose dans le monde est l'amour pour l'AEK!
La cosa piu' bella nel' mondo e' di amare l'AEK!
Dünya'da en güzel şey, AEK aşkı.
A legszebb dolog a világon az AEK iránti imádat.
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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old December 3rd, 2005, 17:57 Thread Starter
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No, that would be Olympiakos. But AEK is very well-run.
Also, this is the largest supported club in Greece, with a billionaire owner.

It's not hard to run OSFP. As we see, theirs fans may whine and bitch, but they know they will never do anything in Europe, so that's one load off the owner.

And with their fanbase, it's easy to make the money needed to buy the talent needed to win in Greece.

We'll measure them up to AEK in a few years keeping in mind the different status' of the owners, and the different numbers of fans.

Then we'll see which is the best run club.

AEK is definetly better run than PAO, who still is the same old PAO ruining good Greek players. Besides, 3-0....

To pio omorfo pragma sto kosmo einai na agapas tin AEK!
Det Vackraste i den har varlden, ar att alska AEK!
Самая прекрасная вещь на свете, это любить АЕК!
La plus belle chose dans le monde est l'amour pour l'AEK!
La cosa piu' bella nel' mondo e' di amare l'AEK!
Dünya'da en güzel şey, AEK aşkı.
A legszebb dolog a világon az AEK iránti imádat.
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old December 4th, 2005, 03:54
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If some Aris fan posted something about how well-run his club was, and how their president was a bloody hero, be sure I would mention it.
To us he is a hero because we're moving foward with him, though some of the R have issues with that for some reason. He isn't the only person running the club by the way, he's a FIGUREHEAD.


Quote:
And wow, a PRE-SEASON game! That makes you worthy UEFA Cup contenters then. PAOK has been pathetic in Europe, but at least they made the group stage
Thought you'd like that.

" The thing is though, no matter how bad your team happens to be, you will still love them. Divorce is not an option in the world of football supporting, it really is a case of death do us part."


AEK till I die!

Ale Viola! FORZA BUTEI!


"I shall always recognise you by the dreadful sword you hold...................."

"Die Mannschaft von down under kommt nach oben"
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post #11 of 26 (permalink) Old December 4th, 2005, 04:01
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Originally Posted by AMOROSO!
I never said Demis was responsible for AEK's near demolition. I just don't buy the whole thing about him being a saviour when he isn't. Aris is run by two tottaly incompetent idiots and they still saved the team from going bankrupt by using article 44 so THAT is not much of an achievement rather than a ruthless exploitation of former employees and creditors with the blessing of the goverment. I would hate to see clubs like AEK and Aris go bust, but there are other ways to save them rather than **** over people who worked for them. Article 44 was made to save businesses from excessive loan credit from banks, not as a means to not pay former employees what they worked for!



Goumenos has quietly and slowly but effectivelly dragged PAOK out of our debts (which were obviously much, much smaller than AEK's - but then he didn't have to use article 44) and is also building quite a good squad with very, very little money. It's nice to think that he's an incompetent fool, but the fact is that he's done quite a good job so far with very limited resources.

Demis started with NO debts, and minimal expectations. Tough times start now for both him and Ivic (a quite overrated Technical Director if you ask me judging by his job so far).



No, that would be Olympiakos. But AEK is very well-run.

Look, Demis might be a jumped up, pretentious little prick, but I do like him and respect him for being one of the few people in football who has morals. I just feel it's too early to label him and his project a total success.

I tend to agree with the above. You're not going to know whether this is great or sh!te for another 3-5 years. The problem that Greek clubs seem to have IMO is that they have a very short term and don't seem to plan ahead which is what I hope will change from this. As I said above, I'm not too rapt about this "award" meself as I don't think we've done anything remotely extraordinary of late. :notlist:

" The thing is though, no matter how bad your team happens to be, you will still love them. Divorce is not an option in the world of football supporting, it really is a case of death do us part."


AEK till I die!

Ale Viola! FORZA BUTEI!


"I shall always recognise you by the dreadful sword you hold...................."

"Die Mannschaft von down under kommt nach oben"
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post #12 of 26 (permalink) Old December 4th, 2005, 21:35 Thread Starter
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UEFA's team of the week makes it 7 straight wins and slides into 2nd spot in the A'Ethniki 6pts ahead of 3rd places Panathinaikos.



To pio omorfo pragma sto kosmo einai na agapas tin AEK!
Det Vackraste i den har varlden, ar att alska AEK!
Самая прекрасная вещь на свете, это любить АЕК!
La plus belle chose dans le monde est l'amour pour l'AEK!
La cosa piu' bella nel' mondo e' di amare l'AEK!
Dünya'da en güzel şey, AEK aşkı.
A legszebb dolog a világon az AEK iránti imádat.
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post #13 of 26 (permalink) Old December 5th, 2005, 00:23
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I don't care that we lost (though it hurts loosing that way), but that man who was refereeing today should not be allowed near a pitch ever again. To not sent Cirillo off for that challenge is not just unfair, but dangerous to the other players in the pitch. Miecel is lucky to have a head. ****ing ******!
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post #14 of 26 (permalink) Old December 5th, 2005, 00:57
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Yea Cirilo should have been send off for that... Quite dangerous.

AEKara OMADARA!
Sikose to gamimeno, den boro na perimeno!
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post #15 of 26 (permalink) Old December 5th, 2005, 06:19 Thread Starter
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Truth be told our form this year leaves something to be desired, but this bunch of players keeps grinding out results, sometimes leaving it late, and while the case can be made for our living dangerously, IMO this shows these guys have something alot of teams lack......heart and sheer willpower.

We still lack a true midfield partner for Katsouranis, a right fullback, a healthy Tzio and perhaps a striker to replace the Ukrainian Oleh because I don't think he will work out for us.

If Ilia Ivic can find us some players to fill these voids, we are on our way to the championship.

To pio omorfo pragma sto kosmo einai na agapas tin AEK!
Det Vackraste i den har varlden, ar att alska AEK!
Самая прекрасная вещь на свете, это любить АЕК!
La plus belle chose dans le monde est l'amour pour l'AEK!
La cosa piu' bella nel' mondo e' di amare l'AEK!
Dünya'da en güzel şey, AEK aşkı.
A legszebb dolog a világon az AEK iránti imádat.
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post #16 of 26 (permalink) Old December 5th, 2005, 06:23 Thread Starter
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Some short videos of the match thanks to AEK.com.....

http://www.aek.com/live/051204aek_paok1.avi

http://www.aek.com/live/051204aek_paok2.avi

http://www.aek.com/live/051204aek_paok3.avi

To pio omorfo pragma sto kosmo einai na agapas tin AEK!
Det Vackraste i den har varlden, ar att alska AEK!
Самая прекрасная вещь на свете, это любить АЕК!
La plus belle chose dans le monde est l'amour pour l'AEK!
La cosa piu' bella nel' mondo e' di amare l'AEK!
Dünya'da en güzel şey, AEK aşkı.
A legszebb dolog a világon az AEK iránti imádat.
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post #17 of 26 (permalink) Old December 5th, 2005, 10:02
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I don't care that we lost (though it hurts loosing that way),
You should've WON that game IMO. But hey I ain't gunna tell you how you should feel.



Quote:
that man who was refereeing today should not be allowed near a pitch ever again. To not sent Cirillo off for that challenge is not just unfair, but dangerous to the other players in the pitch. Miecel is lucky to have a head
Aside from that challenge what else did he do that you considered "dangerous"? Granted, I wouldn't have been suprised if the ref gave a red but don't forget he could also have sent off vangelis for a challenge later in the game when he was already on a yellow. I thought he was fair and not too much a control freak like most of them out there. It was just that the match was a bit rough from both sides, more so us.


Overall, you were DEFINITELY the better team especially in midfield. We were really ordinary and undeserving of the victory. I was impressed with the younger players paok have notably Christodoulopoulos, Karipidis and Vagelis amongst others. If paok can hold on to these players they can expect big things in the coming years.

" The thing is though, no matter how bad your team happens to be, you will still love them. Divorce is not an option in the world of football supporting, it really is a case of death do us part."


AEK till I die!

Ale Viola! FORZA BUTEI!


"I shall always recognise you by the dreadful sword you hold...................."

"Die Mannschaft von down under kommt nach oben"
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post #18 of 26 (permalink) Old December 5th, 2005, 15:58
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AEK keeps winning the matches at 90+,it's really amazing how they do that..They look more like a german team,than a greek one..Anyway,no matter how they do it,i think we shouldn't talk about luck all the time(not that they aint got luck offcourse) and just congratulate them.
It's really nice to see a team fighting all games till last second(not like our PATHETIC employers...).

Cirillo should be sent home for a month.And Briakos permanently.It's just unbelievable!Are these the refferees that they're gonna make the...new Leaque with???
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post #19 of 26 (permalink) Old December 5th, 2005, 18:19
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Originally Posted by Evil 37
Aside from that challenge what else did he do that you considered "dangerous"? Granted, I wouldn't have been suprised if the ref gave a red but don't forget he could also have sent off vangelis for a challenge later in the game when he was already on a yellow.
Yes, Vaggelis should have been sent off (and Katsouranis). But there is a difference between two normal hard fouls worthy of yellow cards and an attempt to decapitate an opponent. Cirillo's challenge was unacceptable for a football player.

Briakos was useless in general yesterday, even though that wasn't the point I was making. But if you want to discuss the effect the reds would have... Cirillo was at 50th minute or so, Vaggelis would have been at 80th+ plus... let's not pretend it's the same thing.

But my beef isn't with the result or the favoritism - it hurts but I don't mind. In my opinion any referee who lets such a challenge go unpunished is either a cojoneless chicken or simply clueless. Your call, but either way that man shouldn't officiate football games.

Quote:
Overall, you were DEFINITELY the better team especially in midfield. We were really ordinary and undeserving of the victory. I was impressed with the younger players paok have notably Christodoulopoulos, Karipidis and Vagelis amongst others. If paok can hold on to these players they can expect big things in the coming years.
Our young players are scarily good for their age. But they're inexperienced, and it showed yesterday. Two goals from corners... bleh...

We'd have won if Zagorakis was playing in my opinion. But oh well...
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post #20 of 26 (permalink) Old December 5th, 2005, 20:24
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I had watched PAOK when played in OAKA against PAO and i was delighted also.I think they should have at least 5 points against us,OSFP and AEK instead of 3.But the big bet is this: Is PAOK able to keep these excellent youngsters and make a wonderfull team in 1,2 or 3 years,or this really nice work is gonna be lost again?...
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