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Greek Super League


Greek government backs down on football ban

The new left-wing Greek Government has had to compromise in its negotiations with the European Union and now it has had to back down on a proposed indefinite ban on football in the Greek Super League.  Governing party Syriza is facing internal tensions over its deal with the EU and could not expend political capital stopping the country's favourite sport.  There will now be just a ban on this weekend's Super League Matches.

It's grim down South

The international federation of players' organisations, Fifpro, has advised players not to join clubs in Greece, Cyrprus or Malta unless they have an assured income from European competitions.   BBC Sport has taken a look at the financial challenges players face when they decide it might be nice to have a season in the sun.

Top Greek football club AEK Athens is casualty of crisis

The economic crisis has hit Greek football hard. Austerity has reduced the disposable income of fans, often drastically, and businesses have also been in difficulty. AEK Athens has become a major casualty of the Eurozone crisis.

They are preparing to declare bankruptcy and seek relegation to the third division. AEK were relegated from the Super League for the first time in their 89-year history in the season just ended. They are in serious financial difficulties and reported to owe 170 million euros in taxes. Angela Merkel, herself a football fan, will be pleased to hear that.

Greek football beset by problems

The progress of Greece to the quarter finals of the Euros has given the country a much needed morale boost, while the match against Germany offers a chance of sweet revenge for the financial humiliations perceived to have been heaped on the country.

Greek football in crisis

Greece is effectively insolvent and many commentators think that despite the efforts of the European Union and the IMF to prop up the economy it will have to default on its debts sooner or later, the first advanced country to do so for sixty years.   Now a major crisis has developed in Greek football and it is inextricably linked to the economic crisis and the country's problems of corruption.

Greek football hit by economic crisis

Football in Greece has been hit hard by the economic crisis and the subsequent austerity measures which have squeezed personal incomes.   Although top teams have enough sponsorship and television income to keep going, teams in the lower leagues have been hit hard with some matches being cancelled because transport for the team cannot be paid for.

However, it is evident that the problems are not just about the economy but are also related to other factors such as violence on the terraces which deters spectators.

AEK Athens FC

Traditional AEK Athens football shirt

AEK was founded in 1924 by Greek refugees from Constantinople (now Istanbul) in the wake of the Greco-Turkish War. The full name is Athlitiki Enosis Konstantinoupoleos (Athletic Union of Constantinople). Honours include winning 11 national Championships and 13 Greek Cups. Home matches are played at the Olympic Stadium in Athens (Capacity: 71,030 all-seated), however a 2007 Memorandum of Cooperation has been signed between the Ministry of Finance and Economy and the club that outlines plans for a new stadium development at Ano Liosia.