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Greece

Published: Monday 4 June 2012, 12.25CET
Fernando Santos's team remained undefeated in qualification, a series of narrow victories helping them finish first in Group F as they target a repeat of their shock 2004 success.

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Published: Monday 4 June 2012, 12.25CET

Greece

Fernando Santos's team remained undefeated in qualification, a series of narrow victories helping them finish first in Group F as they target a repeat of their shock 2004 success.

Best EURO performance: winners 2004
Coach: Fernando Santos
Leading scorer: all-time – Nikos Anastopoulos (29); current – Angelos Charisteas (25)
Most appearances: all-time – Thedoros Zagorakis (120); current – Giorgos Karagounis (117)
Association formed: 1926
Nickname: Galanolefki (Sky blue and whites)

Fernando Santos's team were unbeaten in qualifying, owing much of their success to narrow wins. Those were a familiar feature during their stunning UEFA EURO 2004 success, and an emphasis on team spirit to compensate for the shortage of star names remains an overriding characteristic. Before Portugal, Greece had participated in two major tournaments; this marks their third consecutive UEFA European Championship appearance and they also contested the 2010 FIFA World Cup, exiting after the group stage. It was the same story at UEFA EURO 2008, where they failed to pick up a point.

UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying
Group F: winners
Leading scorer: Giannis Fetfatzidis, Kyriakos Papadopoulos, Vassilis Torossidis (2)
Ever-presents: Giorgos Karagounis, Dimitris Salpingidis (10)

The 2-1 success in Georgia that confirmed qualification was Greece's 100th UEFA European Championship qualifier.

Santos succeeded the long-serving Otto Rehhagel in August 2010 and did not taste defeat in his first 17 matches until a 3-1 reverse against Romania in a friendly in Austria on 15 November. That ended a run of ten victories and seven draws since the Portuguese coach had taken over, the longest unbeaten streak in Greece's history.

With the 14 qualifying goals shared among 11 players – including Kyriakos Papadopoulos, who was just 19 when he scored against Malta on his debut in June 2011 – Greece's success was a real team effort.

Captain Giorgos Karagounis was the only player to start all ten qualifiers, although striker Dimitris Salpingidis also appeared in every game; Santos used 32 players overall, giving a first cap to nine of them. "This is dedicated to all Greeks," said Santos. "We gave them a reason to smile in these tough times. Our team is constantly maturing and we set ourselves no limits. We always keep our sights high."

EURO pedigree
Greece suffered a long wait to follow up on their first finals appearance in 1980 – where they collected one point from their three games – but it proved sensationally worthwhile as Rehhagel's men confounded all expectations to lift the trophy in Portugal in 2004.

The German coach masterminded an effective game plan, his side catching the hosts cold in the opening game with a 2-1 victory. France and the Czech Republic were beaten in the quarter and semi-finals respectively, both succumbing 1-0, before a second defeat of Portugal – thanks to Angelos Charisteas' typical header early in the second period – provided a fairy-tale ending.

All four of Greece's EURO finals victories – from 12 matches – came in 2004, and all by a single goal. While they lost their three group games in Austria and Switzerland in 2008, it could scarcely take the shine off a momentous achievement.

UEFA EURO 2012 Group A fixtures
Friday 8 June: Poland v Greece, 18.00CET, Warsaw
Tuesday 12 June: Greece v Czech Republic, 18.00CET, Wroclaw
Saturday 16 June: Greece v Russia, 20.45CET, Warsaw

Team EURO records
Matches played
Overall: P112 W55 D22 L35 F161 A122
Final tournament: P12 W4 D2 L6 F9 A13
Qualifying: P100 W51 D20 L29 F152 A109

Click here for extensive list of records

Last updated 4 June 2012

SSI Err
Last updated: 06/12/13 4.43CET

Related information

Member associations
Team profiles

http://www.stg.infra.uefa.com/news/newsid=1733457.html#greece

Match log

HomeAway
The home team is listed first.Last updated: 09/11/2017 12:56 CET
1 September 2016 01 Sep - Friendlies 2016-18
Netherlands1-2Greece
Referee: not available Stadium: PSV Stadion, Eindhoven (NED)
08/28/2017 15:52:42
6 September 2016 06 Sep - FIFA World Cup, Qualifying round (Group H)
Gibraltar1-4Greece
Referee: Jakob Kehlet (DEN) Stadium: Estádio Algarve, Faro-Loule (POR)
09/19/2016 17:19:18
7 October 2016 07 Oct - europeanqualifiers, Qualifying round (Group H)
Greece2-0Cyprus
Referee: Pavel Královec (CZE) Stadium: Stadio Georgios Karaiskakis, Piraeus (GRE)
12/19/2016 11:22:13
10 October 2016 10 Oct - europeanqualifiers, Qualifying round (Group H)
Estonia0-2Greece
Referee: István Vad (HUN) Stadium: Lilleküla Stadium, Tallinn (EST)
12/13/2017 07:04:16
9 November 2016 09 Nov - Friendlies 2016-18
Greece0-1Belarus
Referee: not available Stadium: Stadio Georgios Karaiskakis, Piraeus (GRE)
08/28/2017 15:53:57
13 November 2016 13 Nov - europeanqualifiers, Qualifying round (Group H)
GreeceBosnia and Herzegovina
Referee: Jonas Eriksson (SWE) Stadium: Stadio Georgios Karaiskakis, Piraeus (GRE)
12/19/2016 14:03:26
25 March 2017 25 Mar - europeanqualifiers, Qualifying round (Group H)
BelgiumGreece
Referee: TBD Stadium: King Baudouin Stadium, Brussels (BEL)
03/20/2017 15:06:18
Bosnia and Herzegovina0-0Greece
Referee: not available Stadium: Stadion Bilino polje, Zenica (BIH)
06/17/2017 00:04:56
31 August 2017 31 Aug - europeanqualifiers, Qualifying round (Group H)
GreeceEstonia
Referee: TBD Stadium: Stadio Georgios Karaiskakis, Piraeus (GRE)
08/21/2017 10:38:05
3 September 2017 03 Sep - europeanqualifiers, Qualifying round (Group H)
Greece1-2Belgium
Referee: Szymon Marciniak (POL) Stadium: Stadio Georgios Karaiskakis, Piraeus (GRE)
10/18/2017 21:40:17
7 October 2017 07 Oct - europeanqualifiers, Qualifying round (Group H)
CyprusGreece
Referee: TBD Stadium: GSP, Nicosia (CYP)
09/27/2017 10:20:13
10 October 2017 10 Oct - europeanqualifiers, Qualifying round (Group H)
GreeceGibraltar
Referee: TBD Stadium: Stadio Georgios Karaiskakis, Piraeus (GRE)
09/30/2017 10:27:47
CroatiaGreece
Referee: TBD Stadium: Stadion Maksimir, Zagreb (CRO)
10/26/2017 17:02:01
Greece1-2Croatia
Aggregate: 3-2 (agg: 3-2)
Referee: Björn Kuipers (NED) Stadium: Stadio Georgios Karaiskakis, Piraeus (GRE)

General info

  • Founded : 1926
  • Currently playing : European Championship 2010/2012
  • UEFA debut : 25/03/1934 Italy 4:0 Greece (Qualif.) Milan

Trophy cabinet

Team record in UEFA competitions

  • Biggest win:
    11/10/1978, Greece 8-1 Finland, Athens
  • Biggest defeat:
    01/10/1958, France 7-1 Greece, Paris
  • Appearances in UEFA European Football Championship: 14
  • Player with most appearances: 36
    Theodoros Zagorakis ( Greece GRE)
    Giorgos Karagounis ( Greece GRE)
  • Top scorers: 11
    Nikos Anastopoulos ( Greece GRE)
    Angelos Charisteas ( Greece GRE)