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Greece team guide

BBC Sport's Euro 2008 guide to Greece.


Fixtures (Group D):

Greece

v Sweden - 10 June, 1945 BST, Salzburg
Sweden team guide

v Russia - 14 June, 1945 BST, Salzburg
Russia team guide

v Spain - 18 June, 1945 BST, Salzburg
Spain team guide


How did they get there: Raced away from the pack in Group C, qualified with two games to spare and gained 31 points - more than any other team. Recovered from a 4-1 thumping in Athens by Turkey to win seven out of their next eight games.

Otto Rehhagel

Manager: Otto Rehhagel. The 69-year-old German is now the longest-serving Greece coach in history and 'King Otto' has a contract to run until the end of the 2010 World Cup. Remains the only person to have participated in 1,000 Bundesliga matches, but will forever be remembered for leading Greece to Euro 2004 glory.

Captain: Angelos Basinas. A regular in the team for nine years, the 32-year-old Real Mallorca orchestrator was a fundamental part of the winning line-up four years ago, setting up Angelos Charisteas's winner in the final. Has matured with the responsibility of the armband.

606: DEBATE

Euro highlights: All of Greece's Christmases came at once when they stunned the football world and won in Portugal in 2004. They were 100-1 rank outsiders prior to the tournament and had only appeared in one Euros before, losing two of their three games in 1980 in Italy.

Euro legend: It would be hard to ignore the claims of former Leicester City midfielder Theo Zagorakis, who captained his side so superbly to victory in Portugal and was named player of the tournament by Uefa to boot - a far cry from his Filbert Street days. Is Greece's record holder with 120 caps and retired in 2007.

Theofanis Gekas

Star man: Theofanis Gekas. The 27-year-old sharp-shooter has endured a frustrating season in and out of the Bayer Leverkusen side but still managed 11 Bundesliga goals. Was top scorer the season before, hitting 21 with relegation-threatened Bochum and is the Greeks' major goal threat.

Strengths: Rehhagel. Greece have a manager who knows how to mould and inspire a group of players to perform above their usual standards and tactically you would not bet against him out-thinking coaches with more illustrious players to choose from.

Weaknesses: Having said that, you would think Europe's finest have come up with a plan to deal with the Greeks after the shock of 2004. Greece are not unknowns and they will not be taken lightly by anyone this time around. They will also miss Zagorakis's calming influence.

World ranking: 8th.

Our verdict: Lightning does not strike twice and Greece will not win Euro 2008. They might just be able to sneak out of their group if they start well against Sweden, but if that does happen, they should deem it a successful tournament.




see also
Pick your Greece XI
22 May 08 |  Greece
Country profile: Greece
08 Jan 08 |  Country profiles


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