By Vangelis Papadimitriou / firstname.lastname@example.org
Kostas Papanikolaou retained the captain’s armband of Olympiacos, renewing his contract with the Red and Whites, and hopes to find himself again lifting trophies, as happened three times last year, after winning the domestic championship, Greek Cup, and Supercup.
“The philosophy remains the same. You don’t change something successful. The coach’s philosophy in recent years has shown that it leads the team on a successful path, so we will rely on that,” said Papanikolaou to Eurohoops during Olympiacos‘ EuroLeague media day.
“Surely, last year cannot predict the next. Every time you start, you start from scratch. No matter how many changes you have, the goal is to do the best you can. Certainly, there have been changes in the roster. Two crucial and important players left the team, but as history has shown, we managed to find a way to keep Olympiacos at the top.”
Papanikolaou renewed his contract with Olympiacos this year and may end his career with the red-whites after this new agreement.
“The truth is that after so many years, there is very good communication with the presidents, Mr. Panagiotis and George Angelopoulos. We can discuss more openly and clearly. There is mutual respect, and certainly, all these work beneficially and help bring the two sides closer. Since I am satisfied with the team and the team’s behavior that I feel I have, I didn’t see a reason for anything to change.”
He’s honored to be the captain of Olympiacos, following the footsteps of two club legends, Vassilis Spanoulis and Georgios Printezis.
“The honor of being the captain of Olympiacos, the biggest club in Greece and one of the biggest in Europe, says a lot. There are no words. I am lucky to have coincided with these two guys, Vassilis and Georgios. We experienced many moments together, and I am lucky not only for these but mainly because I can call them friends. Because a relationship was created that counts more than anything competitive.”
Goals for the upcoming season are clear: Olympiacos continues to fight for all the available trophies.
“It will sound very cliché because Olympiacos is ‘doomed’ to fight for the best possible. Any title in front of us is an obligation to chase because this is what this specific team has learned to do.”
Kostas Papanikolaou also touched on the natural disasters within Greek borders, with the country fighting against fires and floods in the previous year.
“Because I said it back then in the Philippines, the essence is not to talk, for everyone to say what they have to say. Right, wrong, strange or not. The essence is for solutions to be found. Other things intervened, as you said correctly. The essence is not to see such problems, or at least not to this extent. Words are easy and we all say them. The issue is for actions to be taken and for them to become substance,” Papanikolaou said.