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The Culture of Soccer in Greece. History of Soccer in Greece. The game of soccer appeared for the first time in Greece at the end of the 19 th century and more specifically in 1866. It was brought to the Greek ports by English sailors.

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history of soccer in greece
History of Soccer in Greece
  • The game of soccer appeared for the first time in Greece at the end of the 19th century and more specifically in 1866.
  • It was brought to the Greek ports by English sailors.
  • According to the tradition, the first soccer match was played on January 29th of 1866, on the island of Corfu (Kerkyra). The story goes that the officers of a British warship, which was stationed in the port of Corfu, wanted to play a game with a team formed by the locals. The Greeks were unfamiliar with the sport, yet they still managed to win that first football match on Greek soil, attended by over 3,000 spectators.
history of soccer in greece1
History of Soccer in Greece
  • The first soccer games among Greeks took place in unofficially in 1899.
  • The first Greek championship took place in 1906.
  • In 1907 soccer becomes part of the physical education program of elementary and high schools and at that time the first school teams are created.
  • After a hiatus during the Balkan wars and the Asia Minor catastrophe, soccer becomes a major part of the Greek life after 1920s.
social history of soccer in greece
Social History of Soccer in Greece
  • Before the WWII soccer was part of the working class’ entertainment and culture.
  • It provided the working class with the sense that they belong to a certain unique community, a special social environment that existed independently from those of the upper and middle classes.
  • In the 1960s, soccer becomes professional and the fans of the sport are now members of all social classes.
social history of soccer in greece1
Social History of Soccer in Greece
  • At the same time, these social changes (professionalism, equal distribution of fans in the whole spectrum of the social range) are also reflected in the game arenas.
  • The stadiums also become more luxurious=>pillows on the seats, refreshments, covers for rain etc.
  • In the late 70s and early 80s, the fans of soccer, both in Greece and in Europe, develop a more extreme and aggressive type of behavior.
  • Hooliganism and commercialism of the game
  • It is not uncommon now to have massive riots during a game.
  • The hooligans are young (17-23), they are members of the working class, and come from neighborhoods where gangs fulfill the role of socialization for the young people.
  • Although hooligans come from the working class, their political and social ideology is derived from the extreme right.
  • Often the hooligans of a team are not only against the supporters of the opposite team but also of the opposite class (middle and upper)
  • They also have an anti-government ideology and of course they are also against the police enforcement.
recent episodes of hooliganism in greece
Recent episodes of hooliganism in Greece
  • In April 2007 all sports stadiums were closed down in Greece for two weeks following the death of a fan in a pre-arranged fight between hooligans in Athens on 29 March. The fight involved 500 fans of rival Super League Greece clubs Panathinaikos who are based in Athens and Olympiacos who are based in nearby Piraeus. The Greek government immediately suspended all team sports in Greece and severed the ties between teams and their Supporters Clubs.
recent episodes of hooliganism in greece1
Recent episodes of hooliganism in Greece
  • After a Second Division match on 15 April 2007, between Kallithea and Messiniakos, about fifty fans attacked the Messiniakos coach, Eduardo Amorin and other members of the teams coaching staff. On the same day a Third Division between Panetolikos and Ilioupoli was stopped for thirty minutes when players and fans clashed following a Panetolikos disallowed goal. Two players and a coach were sent to hospital.
recent episodes of hooliganism in greece2
Recent episodes of hooliganism in Greece
  • On 18 April rival fans clashed with each other and riot police in Ioannina during and after a Greek Cup semi final match between local rivals PAS Giannina and Larissa. There was trouble during the game which Larissa won 2-0, and after fans set fire to rubbish bins and smashed shop windows with police firing tear gas in order to disperse them.
  • Panathinaikos was founded by George Kalafatis in 1908, when he and 40 other athletes decided to break away from PanelliniosGymnastikosSyllogos, following the club's refusal to form a football team.
  • Olympiacos CFP (Club of Fans of Pireaus) was founded on March 10, 1925, as a football club initially, when the members of the "Piraeus Football Club" and the "Piraeus Fan Club" decided, to dissolve the two clubs in order to establish a new unified one football club, with the young Olympic games winner boy as their emblem.
  • AEK (Athletic Union of Constantinople) was established in Athens in 1924 by Greek refugees from Constantinople (now Istanbul) immediately after the Asia Minor catastrophe.

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