Sat 08 January 2022 | 16:00

Best Greek Managers of All Time

The most crucial part of every team is the manager who is responsible for playing this game of chess with the opponent as he strategizes and puts the right player in its dedicated position. Today we travel to Greece to meet the best Greek managers of all time.

Before we get into the article let us talk about Greece itself. When we speak of Greece many will think that this country has no world-famous footballer or manager. This assumption is not true, however, the fact that its national team has been on the weak side is correct.


had previously been a minor team in international football, with their first taste of success coming in the 1980s.

They made their first appearance in a major tournament at UEFA Euro 1980, and while they did not advance past the group stage, their qualification to the then eight-team tournament placed them among the top eight European football nations that year.

Greece didn't qualify for another major event until the 1994 FIFA World Cup, and after an unblemished qualification campaign, they struggled in the final, losing all three group matches without scoring. Greece has been a significantly inferior team in the European football landscape until 2004.

We have previously talked about the best Greek footballers, and today just to complete what we have started, we will meet some of the

Greek football managers

who have been considered the best in their managerial performance.

Best Greek managers of all time ranked based on performance

In this article we have tried to include most of the best Greek football managers, however, if you feel like we have missed someone on our list who could have made the cut to be ranked as one of the greatest, feel free to let me know.

It is necessary to mention that this list is consists of managers who are Greek ethnically and we have not only considered the Greece national football team managers.

Now without further ado let us hop into the article of

best Greek football managers


Ioannis Kyrastas

Starting off the

best Greek football managers

list with Kyrastas.

Ioannis Kyrastas was a player and manager from Greece. Kyrastas, who was born in Piraeus, began his football career with Olympiacos, where he made his debut against Kavala on December 10, 1972.

He won five Greek Championships and three Greek Cups with Olympiacos, in which he appeared in 223 games, 16 of which were in European tournaments.

From November 15, 1974, until May 19, 1985, Kyrastas made 46 appearances for the Greek national team. In 1980, he also competed in the

UEFA European Championship


He became a coach after retirement. He successfully coached various clubs, notably Ethnikos Piraeus, Paniliakos (twice), Panionios FC, Iraklis, and lastly


, from 1987 to 2001. He quit coaching after his second stint as Panathinaikos' coach.

Kostas Tsanas

Kostas Tsanas is a former professional footballer who played as a midfielder for the Greek national team. He is the Hellenic Football Federation's current technical director. He started his coaching career with the Athinaikos schools in 2001. In 2005, he took over as head coach of Athinaikos, and in 2006, he took over as head coach of Ilisiakos.

He served as a scouter for


from 2008 to 2009.

He went on to work as an assistant coach for the U19 and U21 national teams. He assumed command of Greece's national under-19 football team and became one of the Greek football managers in October 2011 and guided them to the 2012 UEFA European Under-19 Football Championship final.

He was chosen as the head coach of Greece's national under-21 football team in August 2012.

On two occasions, he served as a caretaker coach for the Greece national football team. He worked as an academy director at AEK Athens from 2019 to 2021. One of the best Greek football managers was named as a technical director by the Hellenic Football Federation in August 2021.

Georgios Kostikos

Georgios Kostikos is a retired professional football player from Greece. In 1975, Kostikos joined Pierikos as a football player, and two years later, he was bought by PAOK. From 1977 until 1986, he was a member of PAOK, before moving on to Olympiacos and Diagoras.

With PAOK, he won the Greek league championship in 1985. Following the departure of PAOK coach Mr. Karageorgiou in 2006, Kostikos was appointed as a caretaker coach to the squad.

PAOK's president Yannis Goumenos named Kostikos as the club's new coach after Kostikos successfully guided


to the UEFA Cup Groups qualification. In the years 2007–2008, Kostikos was the general manager of Nea Salamina in Famagusta, Cyprus.

Traianos Dellas

Traianos Dellas is a former central defender, current manager in Greek professional football, and one of the

best Greek football managers

. He was a key member of

Greece's Euro 2004 winning

side when he became the first and only player to score a silver goal in an international football tournament. Panetolikos of the Super League was his final team to manage.

Dellas was named the new coach of AEK Athens on April 4, 2013, replacing Ewald Lienen, with Akis Zikos named assistant manager. Following AEK's relegation from the Greek Superleague, Dellas would lead the team in Football League 2, Greece's third tier football level, rather than the second, in order to pay off the club's debts.

Dellas resigned as AEK Athens manager on October 20, 2015, after a 4–0 defeat against Olympiacos. He signed a deal with the Greek Superleague team


on November 7, 2015. He signed a deal with Panetolikos of the Super League on January 12, 2018. On April 19, 2019, he announced his resignation.

Panetolikos confirmed his return as the manager of the club in need of points to escape relegation on November 10, 2020.

His second term officially ended on 5 June 2021, with the club congratulating him for helping the team escape relegation, which was done owing to an away goal in a (2–1) loss and a late goal victory at home (1–0) in the relegation play-offs' second leg.

Savvas Kofidis

Savvas Kofidis is a former midfielder and coach in Greek football.

He served as Ivan Jovanovic's assistant coach at Iraklis from 2002 to 2003, as well as aiding head coach Sergio Markarián the following season.

Following Markarián's resignation, Kofidis was named head coach. The next season, with Kofidis at the helm, was a major success, as "The Old One" finished fourth in the Alpha Ethniki championship and qualified for the UEFA Cup against all odds.

However, due to the team's massive debt, several important players were sold over the summer, and the next season was anything but successful. Kofidis resigned after a run of ten league games without a victory and an early elimination from the UEFA Cup against Polish side Wisa Kraków.

Following Takis Lemonis' resignation in January 2007, he was named head coach of Skoda Xanthi, however, he departed the position shortly after.

Iraklis F.C.

administration fired coach Oleg Protasov on October 30, 2009, and replaced him with Kofidis.

What do you think? Did we do Kofidis justice to rank him this way on the best Greek football managers list?

Marinos Ouzounidis

Marinos Ouzounidis is a former player and manager in the Greek professional football league. When he concluded his playing career, Ouzounidis took over as head coach of Kappadokes Alexandoupolis (Greek Fourth Division). He became the manager of APOEL in May 2006.

His first season was a great success, as he finished first and won the Championship three games before the season ended. His squad also advanced to the Cypriot Cup semi-finals. After four draws and three losses in the first 15 games of the second season, he resigned from APOEL.

On May 9, 2008, he accepted an offer from AEL. He was incredibly successful in his debut season with AEL, pushing the club into the playoffs and clinching a position in the following Europa League. His first-year performance appeared to back up AEL chairman Piladakis' decision to hire young Greek coaches to guide the squad to victory.

Ouzounidis was named manager of Panionios in December 2014, and he enjoyed a high rate of success with the club during two domestic seasons, with 28 victories and 20 draws in 70 games.

This is all we have to say about him to end this portion of the best Greek football managers post on a high note, for his career went south after that and he failed to live up to expectations.

Angelos Anastasiadis

Angelos Anastasiadis is a former international player and Greek football manager. Anastasiadis took over as manager of


F.C. in July 1994 but quit after three months due to a seven-game losing streak that comprised one draw and six defeats. However, the narrative did not finish there.

After a few years of club management and a successful managerial career with PAOK and Iraklis and some other clubs, he became the leader of Greece national team.

In October 2018, Vangelis Grammenos, the president of the Hellenic Football Federation, chose Anastasiadis to coach the Greece national team, making him the first of

Greek football managers

to hold the position on a permanent basis since Vassilis Daniil in 2001.

Grammenos stated that the federation made the strategic choice to employ a Greek coach "to impart the attributes essential in a national squad" after the team gained six points in four matches in the UEFA Nations League and sits behind first-placed Finland.

Anastasiadis brought in numerous new players, including Odisseas Vlachodimos, Spyros Risvanis, Manolis Siopis, and Giorgos Masouras, with the goal of earning promotion to the 2018–19 UEFA Nations League.

Greece began the season with a 1–0 win against Finland in November 2018 but was unable to secure promotion after a 1–0 loss to Estonia due to an own goal by Vassilis Lambropoulos.

In the UEFA Euro 2020 qualifiers, Greece played Italy, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Finland,


, and Liechtenstein. Anastasiadis began the season with a 2–0 win against Liechtenstein, followed by a 2–2 tie with Bosnia and Herzegovina, in which the squad leveled the score after going down by two goals.

Following 3–0 and 3–2 losses against Italy and Armenia, Grammenos confirmed Anastasiadis' departure as manager on July 15, 2019.

Alketas Panagoulias

Alketas Panagoulias played and managed association football in Greece. He was the manager of both Greece's and the United States' national teams. He has managed several teams, notably Aris, his hometown team, and Olympiakos, with whom he won three Alpha Ethniki titles.

He came to the United States after obtaining his first degree and studied at the University of New York City. In 1967, 1968, and 1969, he led the Greek American Atlas to three straight National Challenge Cup victories.

In 1972, he returned to Athens, Greece, as an assistant coach for the Greece national football team, working under Billy Bingham, the famed Northern Ireland coach. He was named head coach of the Greek national football team the following year.

From 1973 until 1981, he was one of the

Greece national football team managers

, achieving the country's first participation in the Euro in Italy in 1980. Until 2004, when Greece won the title, that was the only time Greece qualified for the Euro competition.

From 1981 to 1983, he was the coach of the Olympiacos C.F.P., who won the championship in 1982 and 1983. Following a return to the United States, He then returned to Athens, Greece, to coach Olympiacos C.F.P., which won the championship in 1987. From 1987 to 1990, he was the head coach of Aris FC, and from 1991 to 1992, he was the head coach of Levadiakos.

In 1992, he returned as head coach of the Greek National Football team, leading them to their first World Cup berth in 1994.

Despite his popularity among Greek supporters at the time, the National Team's poor performance in the World Cup was seen as a national embarrassment, and he faced significant criticism. In 1997, he managed Iraklis FC, then from 1998 to 1999, he coached Aris Thessaloniki.

Nikos Nioplias

Before we get to the top manager of the best Greek football managers list we have to meet Nikos as the second place of our ranking.

Nikos Nioplias is a Greek football manager and former player who is currently in charge of OFI Crete in the Super League.

In January 2005, he was named coach of the Greece national under-19 football team and one of Greece national football team managers after receiving his coaching diploma. Despite a win against the hosts, he guided the squad to the 2005 U19 European Championship in Northern Ireland, but they did not advance beyond the group stage.

After being undefeated in their group, which included Spain, Portugal, and the host country


, he led Greece to the final of the U19 European Championship two years later.

After having a player sent off in the 61st minute, Greece upset Germany 3–2 in the semi-final with a 90th-minute header. On July 27, the final between Spain (who overcame France in the other semi-final) and Greece was played, and Greece lost 1–0 despite a strong second-half performance.

On December 8, 2009, Nioplias was named Panathinaikos' head coach with Krzysztof Warzycha, after the dismissal of the previous manager, Henk ten Cate. In 2010, he won both the Greek Superleague and the Greek Cup for the first time.

Nioplias agreed to be the manager of the Cyprus national football team till the completion of the UEFA Euro 2012 qualifiers and the 2014 World Cup qualifiers with the Cyprus Football Association in June 2011.

He made his official debut against Portugal in a

EURO 2012

qualifier when his side lost 0–4 at home. In the aftermath of Cyprus' dismal performance in the 2014 World Cup qualifiers, Nioplias resigned after a 0–2 defeat to Slovenia on September 12, 2013.

Kostas Negrepontis

The last candidate on the best Greek football managers list is truly the best.

In the 1920s and 1930s, Kostas Negrepontis was a Greek international footballer who played as a center forward and subsequently became a coach. b In his early years, Negrepontis was a cornerstone of Greek football, contributing both as a player and as a coach, as well as a football instructor for aspiring coaches.

He got into coaching towards the conclusion of his playing career. In reality, it occurred for the first time in 1933, during a qualification match between AEK Athens and Goudi. At the time, its coach was Hungarian Emil Rauchmaul, and Negrepontis was on vacation in Samos.

Because of the significance of the occasion, he decided to prepare AEK for this vital match, making him the first Greek coach of a major team at a period when most coaches were foreign. AEK was the first club to coach, and the squad benefited from his services for 16 years.

AEK won the Greek Cup once in 1939 and two Greek championships during this time, while Negrepontis provided AEK and Greek football players such Maropoulos, Tzanetis, Goulios, Delavinias, Kontoulis, Mageiras, Manetas, and Xenos. He took over as coach of Panionios in September 1950.

Negrepontis returned to AEK in 1955–57, winning the Greek Cup with them in 1956. Negrepontis left AEK in February 1957 but returned to technical leadership in 1958.

He became the technical director of Atromitos in 1959. Between 1933 and 1953, Negrepontis served as the coach of Greece on four occasions. He was the coach who led Greece to its most famous victory, an 8–0 win over Syria at Apostolos Nikolaidis Stadium on November 25, 1949.

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