Kevin Mirallas has been announced by english football club Everton as their latest capture. Mirallas has signed a 4 year contract with the transfer amount rumoured to be in the region of €7.64m (according to Gavros).
Twenty players made the trip to Italy for tomorrows game against Napoli. The full team was announced as :-
Goalkeepers (2) :-
Defenders (6) :-
Siovas, Holebas, Manolas, Papazoglou, Torosidis, Contreras
Midfielders (10) :-
Greco, Ibagasa, Fuster, Modesto, Maniatis, Fejsa, Abdoun, Vlachodimos, Lykogiannis, Machado
Attackers (2) :-
Notable absentees are Tatos (injured yesterday), Fetfatzidis (tired), Pantelic (tired) and Mirallas (taking medical at Everton). The game starts at 10pm tomorrow.
Iosif Daskalakis has been transferred to Superleague club Veroia. The simple statement from their website read :-
"Veroia announces the acquisition of Iosif Daskalakis for one year".
Daskalakis was disappointing for us and was considered fourth choice after the arrival of Gianniotas.
Our latest friendly game took place against Dutch side Willem II. This game took place in the later stages of our preparation and so we were looking to play well tonight but also it would serve as a final check for Jardim. After this game, hopefully he would know which players would be cut from the final team for certain.
As for the game itself, we scored early on after a 5th minute run into the box from Lykogiannis and a low pass to Djebbour who tucked the ball into the net. The game was well fought over the pitch without either side getting much of an advantage and possession being largely even. Unfortunately our defence switched off after a free kick in the 23rd minute and one of their players was left totally unmarked just at the time when he received the ball. There was very little which Carroll could do when the ball was shot past him and into the net.
The goal seemed to spur the Dutch onwards and they started to get the advantage with the ball winning a second goal in the 36th minute with a headed shot. We were not looking very good on the pitch at this point and so Pantelic was introduced to provide more attacking options. We didn't create anything else of note in the first half and so went into the break a goal down. This wasn't a brilliant half of football for us despite the goal and we hope for something better after the break.
Once the match had restarted and we had made two changes, we started to push a little harder up the pitch. We still looked very flaky on the defence however and Willem were able to get chances on goal all too often. Even with another three changes we were too often on the defensive and came close to conceding another goal in the 60th minute from a header which deflected off the upright. At the other end, Fetfatzidis had a chance in a shot on goal but found his chance deflected off the keepers legs.
We got an equaliser in the 64th minute from a point blank ranged shot from Djebbour and followed this up with more chances on the Dutch goal. We were still having some difficulty in keeping hold of the ball, especially in the middle of the pitch but we were looking more aggressive now. Willem made a couple more chances on goal but we went in front in the 83rd minute after Mitroglou was dragged down in the box by the keeper and a penalty was awarded. Pantelic converted the penalty and this sealed the win for our team. There were no other real chances of the game and so it eventually finished 2-3 in our favour. We now move onto our friendly against Malaga (assuming this takes place as the Malaga squad is refusing to come over unpaid wages).
Willem II 2-3 Olympiakos
83' Pantelic (p)
Olympiakos : Carroll, Karagounis (42' Pantelic; 89' Chumbinho), Manolas (60' Torosidis), Potouridis (60' Maniatis), Dielna (60' Holebas), Fejsa (46' Papazoglou), Ibagasa (46' Siovas), Vlachodimos (60' Diogo), Fetfatzidis (77' Abdoun), Lykogiannis (77' Tatos), Djebbour (77' Mitroglou).
Petar Grbic has agreed to move on loan to Ukranian side Karpaty Lviv for the season. He had spent last year on loan at Levadiakos and then Hapoel Beer Shiva but didn't manage to appear in more than half a dozen games for either team. Grbic wasn't included in our pre-season training being surplus to requirements and this move will be in his interest.
The deal has not been confirmed by either club as yet but should be finalised within a day or so.
Tonights match was the first from our visit to Portugal and the first from our second stage of the pre-season. Jardim lined our team up in a traditional 4-3-3 for the first half perhaps giving an indication of our preferred formation for the season. Perhaps it is best not to read too much into the formation as we swapped into last seasons 4-2-3-1 after halftime. Anyway we were facing a decent enough opponent in Farense on their home ground so tonight would be a good test for us.
As for the game itself, it began at a fast rate and continued at this pace throughout the first half. This was a marked improvement on the games played in Austria although this was to be expected as the players were getting fitter. Our passing and control of the ball were also much improved and we had the lions share of the ball possession in the half.
As for the chances, Pantelic and Chumbinho both had chances on goal but it was Fetfatzidis who caused the Portuguese the most problems with several penetrating runs from the right hand side. Pantelic had a good chance of scoring in the 15th minute but saw his shot saved by the keeper. In the event it was Fetfatzidis who was responsible for the opening goal. His break into the box being too fast for the defender who brought him down with a trailing leg for a penalty. Pantelic converted and so the score at halftime was a deserved 0-1 to us.
The entire team was switched at halftime and so the dynamics of the match also altered. Our second half was played at a more sedate pace and we didn't push forward as much as we had in the previous 45'. We did still have some chances on goal and Mitroglou had a shot early on which unfortunately didn't have the power to beat the goalkeeper.
After the new team had settled we started to control the game once again, winning a few corners and generally pressurising the Portuguese defence. In reply, Farense had their seemingly first chance of the game with a header on goal in the 73rd minute. Abdoun was tripped in the box during the 78th minute for a second penalty. He converted this himself to seal the victory and then scored a second goal (our third of the game) in the 87th minute. This goal was a pure mistake from the Farense keeper as he went to the edge of his area and promptly threw it to Abdoun who then had an empty net at his mercy.
Overall we had a fine victory and we can now look forward to Newcastle on Friday night.
Farense 0-3 Olympiakos
38' Pantelic (p)
78' Abdoun (p)
1st Half Olympiakos :
Carroll, Karagounis, Papazoglou, Siovas, Holebas, Modesto, Chumbinho, Fetfatzidis, Tatos, Vlachodimos, Pantelic
2nd Half Olympiakos :
Megyeri, Torosidis, Manolas, Dielna, Potouridis, Maniatis, Fejsa, Abdoun, Diogo, Lykogiannis, Mitroglou.
Leandro Greco became the latest signing for our club yesterday when the Italian midfielder signed a three year contract to seal his move from AS Roma.
Greco's arrival now means that we now have a pretty packed midfield with himself, Fejsa, Maniatis, Modesto, Chumbinho and Ibagasa all fighting for two spaces on the pitch.
He will be formally announced by the club today and will then fly out to Portugal to join the remainder of the team.
The first portion of the pre-season training is now done with the team returning from Austria yesterday. The overall impression of the facilities has not been great and at least session was cancelled due to the poor water drainage of the pitch. I wouldn't be too surprised if we didn't go there again.
Anyway we now move onto the next phase which sees our team leave for Portugal in a few days time. Whilst over there, we will be playing a mini tournament against some decent quality opposition and the next 10 days or so see us play 3 friendly matches.
Jardim has apparently stated that the team will be evaluated in this phase and after the team returns from Portugal, we will undergo the process of shedding players either with transfers or loans to reduce us down to a squad of 25-36 players. Players rumoured to be going include Javito, Grbic, Katai, Chumbinho, Niklitsiotis and Nemeth but we will have to wait and see for definite.
One player who has definitely gone is our youth team player Panagiotis Stamogiannos. He has joined Kerkyra on a 2 year deal having never managed a senior appearance for our team and was simply an under-21 player for us during his stay with us.
The fixtures for the upcoming season were pulled earlier today. We have a tough start to the season with all of the derbies in the first half being played away from home. We have the two main derbies within 2 matches of each other on days 12, 14, 27 and 20 respectively.
Heres the full list :-
1st Matchday : Veroia - Olympiakos
2nd Matchday : Olympiakos - Levadiakos
3rd Matchday : PAS Giannina - Olympiakos
4th Matchday : Olympiakos - Panthrakikos
5th Matchday : Atromitos - Olympiakos
6th Matchday : Olympiakos - Asteras Tripolis
7th Matchday : Olympiakos - Skoda Xanthi
8th Matchday : Aris - Olympiakos
9th Matchday : Olympiakos - OFI
10th Matchday : AEK - Olympiakos
11th Matchday : Olympiakos - Kerkyra
12th Matchday : Voulgaroi - Olympiakos
13th Matchday : Olympiakos - Platanias
14th Matchday : Poutanas Gios - Olympiakos
15th Matchday : Panionios - Olympiakos
16th Matchday : Olympiakos - Veroia
17th Matchday : Levadiakos - Olympiakos
18th Matchday : Olympiakos - PAS Giannina
19th Matchday : Panthrakikos - Olympiakos
20th Matchday : Olympiakos - Atromitos
21st Matchday : Asteras Tripolis - Olympiakos
22nd Matchday : Skoda Xanthi - Olympiakos
23rd Matchday : Olympiakos - Aris
24th Matchday : OFI - Olympiakos
25th Matchday : Olympiakos - AEK
26th Matchday : Kerkyra - Olympiakos
27th Matchday : Olympiakos - Voulgaroi
28th Matchday : Platanias - Olympiakos
29th Matchday : Olympiakos - Poutanas Gios
30th Matchday : Olympiakos - Panionios