Greek football scandal: gun on the pitch
Greek football has been rocked by a scandal five matchdays before the end of the season. During a match between PAOK Thessaloniki and AEK Athens, PAOK's owner Ivan Savvidis stormed the pitch carrying a revolver because he disagreed with a referee's ruling. All the league's activities have now been suspended. Greek journalists fear the scandal will be disastrous.
The last thing Greece needs now
Greece is at risk of being divided, warns Kathimerini:
“The danger here is that this whole issue could turn into a political screaming clash, regardless of which team is granted the league title by a court decision. Worse, it could sow division between north and south. ... Soccer stands have always been fertile ground, and especially in periods of crisis, for fanaticism and extreme nationalism that then spills out into the streets and sometimes even into the battlefield, as was the case in Yugoslavia in the early 1990s. Greece is on the brink right now and this kind of division is the last thing it needs.”
Football without rules
Naftemporiki fears the suspension of the Greek Super League won't lead to any improvement:
“The former deputy sports minister already interrupted the championship in February 2015 and the Greek Football Cup in March 2016. And he postponed the start of the 2016/17 season so that a new sporting law could be passed. And what was the outcome? Nothing but a waste of time. Now, once more the decision has been taken to suspend the championship: the third suspension in three years. ... Greek football seems to operate according to the law of the jungle. And the situation only gets worse from game to game. Like a Balkan parody in a gangster film.”