The Organisation of Greek Football: An Example To Avoid

Some of you may think that Greek football doesn't really count for much. Off the pitch, you would be surprised. 

It is my intention to analyse, extensively, the regulatory framework of the Hellenic Football Federation and the organisation of the Greek Super League, who is responsible for the top flight of football in Greece. Such analysis may pose no real surprises, as rules are in existence for the proper and efficient running of the sport. What is of surprise and at the same time, of enormous concern, is how Greek football authorities have an amazing ability to manipulate rules and regulations and apply them in a way that the average nous cannot possibly comprehend.

I shall use several examples, over the next few weeks, to describe the events of summer 2011, with the exposure of corruption, scandals and, unfortunately, the absence of the law. These examples would demonstrate how the Greek authorities run [or fail to run] their sport and how the Media are being used to direct public opinion to a certain element of polarisation.

I shall, primarily, concentrate on the example of Iraklis FC, the most historic club in Greece, who suffered several relegations in a matter of four weeks, an administration and then a merger. All this because of a misapplication [on behalf of the governing bodies] of the licensing regulations [that changed this year to ensure that clubs with financial problems could avoid relegation!] and an allegation against the club of forging a document! We would also examine why and how the Iraklis FC lawyer [before the CAS] was threatened several times to abandon the case, how the Hellenic Football Federation and the Super League dealt with their disciplinary committees and how specific Iraklis FC officers responded to the situation.

The BBC extensively described the situation in Greek football in a comprehensive report that could be read here: Other clubs have also been relegated and individuals ended up in prison, pending the outcome of a trial. But all this occurred in a very selective manner.

The conclusion would be, to say the least, so amazing that would perhaps persuade Steven Spielberg to make a movie! For all intents and purposes, the relevant posts would concentrate on the several sports law ramifications, but above all, they would speak the truth. I am convinced that such truth would upset many. 

In an academic forum, all views are respected and I would only be too happy to discuss such constructive views with all concerned. What I am not prepared to do, however, is to accept 'underground' attempts, by unknown and irrelevant quantities, to influence the Media and attack my name and my reputation. Such attempts would be robustly resisted.

More to come soon.

Dr. Gregory Ioannidis

2 May 2012


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