By Aris Barkas/ firstname.lastname@example.org
Dimitris Giannakopoulos, son of Pavlos and the owner of Panathinaikos BC, gave a long interview in the radio station Sentra FM and talked about everything. Still the question about what exactly happened with Zeljko Obradovic and why he left the team, remains.
As Giannakopoulos said: “Obradovic is like a second father to me, or a big brother. He is the best of the best. We still have a good relationship, but to tell you the truth, I still don’t know what he meant, when he talked about lack of respect”.
According to the boss of the Greens: “We had three meetings and I tried to convince him to stay. If the only matter was money, then he will be working now in Turkey. We are still friends and we are trying to find an open date in order for him to come to OAKA for a game in his honor. There’s still the question about why he left. I can’t be bitter towards him, but I would like to know why he left”.
But there is some bitterness for the way Panathinaikos’ roster was dismantled: “I consider mr Lotsos, the agent, responsible for the decision of Batiste, Perperoglou and Kaimakoglou to leave the team. He didn’t want any of his players to stay. People close to Obradovic and NOT Obradovic himself, tried together with Lotsos to disassemble the team”.
Giannakopoulos admitted that he still wants a Chinese player in his team: “We want to open the Chinese market. We must try to boost our revenues. Our target is a young 18 years old player, Guo, who is good enough, but it’s hard… He must have the permit of the province, or some other state official. It’s like the old Soviet Union. However I believe that this transaction can be done. We want to invite the Chinese national team, or the domestic champion of the country for an exhibition game, in order to establish some kind of connection”.
Last but not least, speaking about his “eternal rival” Olympiacos in a question about the Reds being now the favorites, he replied: “Olympiacos never starts the season as a favorite. They always target the second position”.