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Top facts about Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Papa

Tue 10 May 2022 | 4:30

Sokratis Papastathopoulos became synonymous with Borussia Dortmund's defense throughout his five seasons at the club. Read on to find out more facts about Sokratis Papastathopoulos.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos (born 7 June 1988) is a Greek professional footballer who plays center-back for Super League club Olympiacos and the Greece national team.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos’s age

is 33. Here, you can find out the most important facts about Sokratis Papastathopoulos, former Dortmund and Arsenal defender.

An important fact about Sokratis Papastathopoulos is that he began his career with Aiantas Kalamatas and Apollon Petalidiou in his youth. In 2005, AEK Athens scouted him and loaned him to Niki Volos for a year.

He only appeared in eleven games while there. Following that, he was a consistent force at AEK Athens for two seasons. He eventually appeared in 58 games for the capital club, scoring once.

The Champions League match against his later employer

AC Milan

was a highlight of his time at AEK. That game was won 1-0 by AEK, and Sokratis kept direct opponent Milan legend Filippo Inzaghi out of the game.

Top facts about Sokratis Papastathopoulos:

In the summer of 2008, the Italian Genoa purchased Sokratis from AEK for a fee of 3,800,000 euros. He made his Genoa debut on September 27, 2008, against Fiorentina.

On October 5, 2008, he scored his first goal for Genoa against Napoli at home, but he also received his second yellow card in injury time, forcing him to leave the field with a red card. Genoa won the game 3-2. The following season, he started most of the games and quickly became a fan favorite in Genoa.

On July 20, 2010, it was announced that Sokratis would join AC Milan for a fee of €4,500,000. The defender was

Massimiliano Allegri

's first signing as head coach. However, the marriage was not a happy one, as he only played seven games for the Rossoneri in his first and only season.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos early life

Papastathopoulos was born in the Peloponnese city of Kalamata. Toni Savevski spotted Papastathopoulos from Apollon Petalidiou, and he joined AEK Athens. There is no information available regarding

Sokratis Papastathopoulos’ parents

.

Regarding

Sokratis Papastathopoulos’ childhood

, it should be mentioned that he made his AEK debut in a Greek Cup match against PAS Giannina on October 26, 2005, scoring in the seventh minute to lift AEK to a 3–0 victory.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos personal life

In 2006, when he was playing on loan at Niki Volou, his coach was Vangelis Stamoulakis. At the same time he met the daughter of his coach, Xanthippi, with whom he married in 2013 with a civil wedding in Volos and then with a religious wedding in Sounio in July 2014.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos professional career

Papastathopoulos prefers to play as a central defender, but he is also capable of playing as a defensive midfielder. He captained Greece's under-21 national team to the final of the 2007 European Under-19 Championship.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos club career

An important fact about Sokratis Papastathopoulos is that he was loaned to Beta Ethniki club Niki Volou for six months in January 2006 to obtain first-team experience to earn first-team football. For Niki Volou, he made a total of 15 appearances.

Papastathopoulos made 14 appearances in the 2006–07 Super League Greece season, battling against players like as Bruno Cirillo, Traianos Dellas, and Vangelis Moras.

Papastathopoulos appeared in three of AEK Athens' six group games in the 2006–07 UEFA Champions League season. AEK achieved one win (the legendary 1–0 triumph against A.C. Milan, when he man-marked

Filippo Inzaghi

), one tie (the 2–2 away draw with Anderlecht), and one loss (the 3–1 away defeat to Lille) in these three games.

He was a staple in AEK's defense throughout the 2007–08 Super League Greece season, holding Geraldo Alves at bay. In a Super League match against local Athens rivals Panathinaikos in 2008, he became AEK's youngest-ever captain, at the age of 19, in a game against local Athens rivals Panathinaikos.

Genoa

An important

fact about Sokratis Papastathopoulos

is that he agreed to a move to Genoa of the Italian Serie A for an unknown price on August 1, 2008. On the same day, he also played a club friendly against Genoa.

On September 27, 2008, he made his Genoa debut against

Fiorentina

, followed by a Coppa Italia start against Ravenna a few days later. On October 5, 2008, he scored his first goal for Genoa against Napoli at home.

The game ended in a 3–2 victory for Genoa, but Papastathopoulos was sent off in the 89th minute. During the 2009–10 season, he appeared in almost every game and became a fan favorite.

Milan

A notable fact about Sokratis Papastathopoulos is that he joined A.C. Milan on July 20, 2010, after Genoa and Milan agreed to sell him for €14 million, with the following payment schedule: Gianmarco Zigoni (half of his registration rights, worth €3.75 million), Nnamdi Oduamadi (half of his rights, worth €3.5 million), and Rodney Strasser (half of his rights, worth €2.25 million) in a co-ownership deal, plus €4.

Under new manager Massimiliano Allegri, Papastathopoulos was the club's first signing. On May 24, 2011, Milan and Genoa executives Adriano Galliani and Enrico Preziosi reached a verbal agreement to resolve the player ownerships of

Kevin-Prince Boateng

, Alberto Paloschi, Marco Amelia, and Giacomo Beretta (subject to player agreements).

Milan repurchased Gianmarco Zigoni, Rodney Strasser, and Nnamdi Oduamadi (all at original prices), while Genoa repurchased Papastathopoulos for €13 million, therefore lowering Milan's de facto loan cost to €1 million.

Bremen

A notable fact about Sokratis Papastathopoulos is that he signed a loan contract with Werder Bremen until the conclusion of the 2011–12 season, with the option to buy the club outright, on July 21, 2011.

On April 16, 2012, it was reported that Papastathopoulos will join Bremen on a permanent basis for a €5 million transfer fee, after outstanding performances on loan.

The club's 2012–13 season, on the other hand, was a disaster. In March 2013, as the squad was in the thick of a relegation fight and emotions were high, Papastathopoulos got into an altercation with teammate Marko Arnautovic on the training site. Bremen would end the season in 14th place, avoiding relegation.

Dortmund

Papastathopoulos completed a €9.5 million move to Dortmund on the day of the 2013 Champions League Final between

Bayern Munich

and Borussia Dortmund on May 24, 2013, committing to a five-year deal until 2018.

He remarked about the agreement after signing it, stating, "My choice to join Dortmund was not influenced by financial considerations. All that mattered was my own future, and I am certain that I made the correct option."

With Felipe Santana leaving Dortmund for Schalke 04, Papastathopoulos was forced to start as the third-choice defender behind Neven Subotic and Mats Hummels.

Michael Zorc, the Sporting Director of Borussia Dortmund, stated his excitement with the deal: "We are ecstatic that Sokratis has chosen Borussia Dortmund as his new club. We feel he has significant potential as a versatile defensive player capable of playing in a number of roles."

In a pre-season friendly against Swiss club Basel at St. Jakob-Park on July 10, 2013, Papastathopoulos made his Dortmund debut, with fellow BVB debutants (and future Arsenal colleagues) Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

After coming in as a substitute in a 4–2 triumph over Bayern Munich for the 2013 DFL-Supercup on July 27, he earned his first trophy with the club. In a 6–1 triumph against VfB Stuttgart in the Bundesliga on November 1, 2013, he scored his first goal for Dortmund.

A notable

fact about Sokratis Papastathopoulos

is that he was named to the best XI of the 2013–14 Bundesliga season as a result of his impressive first year with Dortmund.  The Bundesliga's governing body held a global fan poll on its official website to make the pick.

Following his nomination, his play was described as follows: "He is the personification of defense. Due to the unavailability of Neven Suboti and Mats Hummels, the Greek goalkeeper took advantage of the opportunity presented to him. Stable, having leadership qualities and a proclivity for winning the ball without making a mistake."

Papastathopoulos was sidelined for two weeks in November 2014 due to a fractured fibula. He injured his right leg in Dortmund's 1–0 victory against Borussia Mönchengladbach, which stopped the club's five-match Bundesliga losing skid.

He was declared fit for BVB's Champions League encounter against Arsenal on November 26 after a quick recovery.

On 3 January 2015, football news website Goal.com analyzed statistics to determine which players in Europe's top five leagues had the highest tackle success rate in the first half of the 2014–15 season; Papastathopoulos and Hamburger SV's Matthias Ostrzolek tied for third place, having won 92.59 percent of all tackles.

As Dortmund prepared for a fresh start after the loss of long-time manager Jürgen Klopp in the summer of 2015, Papastathopoulos was connected with a number of English Premier League teams.

However, Dortmund Sporting Director Michael Zorc said that Papastathopoulos will still play a role for the club in new manager Thomas Tuchel's first season. Papastathopoulos' contract with

Borussia Dortmund

was extended until 2019 on October 26, 2015.

"We are really delighted that we have been able to sign with Sokratis, another great performer, on a long term basis," Zorc said after the agreement was announced.

Papastathopoulos was appointed as partner-in-chief to Mats Hummels over Neven Subotic during Tuchel's tenure.

Papastathopoulos scored his first goal in the 2015–16 Bundesliga on December 19, 2015, in a 2–1 away defeat to 1. FC Köln, a header from a corner giving his team the lead in the first half.

Papastathopoulos made his 100th Bundesliga appearance for Dortmund on January 30, 2016, against Ingolstadt 04 in a league match.

A notable fact about Sokratis Papastathopoulos is that he suffered an adductor injury on February 22, 2016, and missed the second leg of the UEFA Europa League round-of-32 competition against FC Porto as well as the Bundesliga match against Bayern Munich.

Tests revealed that the 27-year-old would be sidelined for up to three weeks. During Dortmund's 1–0 victory against

Bayer Leverkusen

, the Greek centre defender sustained an injury and was substituted 13 minutes from time at the BayArena.

Papastathopoulos appeared in his third DFB-Pokal final in a row on May 21, 2016, putting up a fantastic performance despite a missed penalty, but he was unable to win the DFB-Pokal for the first time in his career.

He began the 2016–17 season as BVB's uncontested defensive leader. He scored the second goal in a 6–0 loss to Legia Warsaw in a Group Champions League encounter on September 15, 2016.

The Greek international was named one of the finest players in the German Bundesliga by the German magazine "kicker" on January 4, 2017.

The magazine pays homage to the top players in the German Bundesliga right now, categorizing them into several groups.

There were no defenders listed in the top category (World Class), but Papastathopoulos was one of three defenders included in the second category, International Class. Mats Hummels of Bayern Munich and Jonathan Tah of Bayer Leverkusen were the other two defenders.

In a DFB Pokal home win on penalties against Hertha Berlin on February 8, 2017, Papastathopoulos' two quickfire (in a minute) bookings for dissent saw Dortmund finish extra time with 10 men before Fabian Lustenberger, Vladimr Darida, and Salomon Kalou all erred from the spot, rendering Christian Pulisic's miss irrelevant.

Dortmund made three changes from the 3–0 victory over VfL Wolfsburg the previous weekend, and it was two of them, Papastathopoulos and Raphael Guerreiro, who combined to start the scoring in the 13th minute of a 3–0 away triumph over SC Freiburg.

As Guerreiro whipped in a free-kick from the right, Papastathopoulos seemed to be offside, but the Greece defender met it with a header that went inside the right-hand post.

On April 16, 2017, Papastathopoulos was the one who responded quickly to an Eintracht Frankfurt equalizer by scoring a goal following Sven Bender's assist, putting his club up 3–1 at home.

On April 26, 2017, he assisted Borussia Dortmund to a 3–2 victory against Bayern Munich in the DFB-Pokal final, which was their fourth in a row.

In a home game against SV Werder Bremen on May 20, 2017, Papastathopoulos made his 100th appearance for Dortmund in the Bundesliga, securing automatic qualifying to the UEFA Champions League group stage for next season.

Borussia Dortmund won the DFB-Pokal for the first time since 2012 on May 27, 2017, when

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

scored a penalty to overcome Eintracht Frankfurt 2–1.

He lost the 2017 DFL-Supercup on penalties against Bayern Munich on August 5, 2017, as the club's captain.

He scored at the conclusion of the first half against 1. FC Köln on September 17, 2017, giving his side a two-goal advantage. It was his first goal of the 2017–18 season, and he scored it with the help of the VAR (Video Assistant Referee) system.

On October 14, 2017, Borussia Dortmund's unbeaten start to the season was ended by RB Leipzig's 3–2 away win, as the Greek defender initially assisted Leipzig winger Yussuf Poulsen in scoring, before being sent off for a foul in the box at the start of the second half, and Jean-Kévin Augustin scored the penalty.

Dortmund needed a win to kick-start its UEFA Champions League campaign on October 17, 2017, after losing its first two games in Group H to Tottenham Hotspur and Real Madrid.

However, they only managed an away draw against Cypriot champions APOEL, as the Greek defender equalized with a header to Mario Götze's cross.

He sustained a leg injury in the first half of a derby against rivals Bayern Munich and was replaced by Jeremy Toljan, then two weeks later in an away game against VfB Stuttgart, he got a strong hit and was replaced at the end of the first half by Dan-Axel Zagadou.

Arsenal

On July 2, 2018, Arsenal confirmed that Papastathopoulos has signed a long-term deal with the club for a reported sum of £17.6 million, with the number 5 jersey being his.

He made his official debut with the club as a starter on August 12, 2018, in a 2–0 defeat to champions Manchester City at Emirates Stadium.

After only four minutes of play in Baku, Papastathopoulos was left unmarked inside the opposition penalty area, redirecting the ball home after an early header dropped into his path. The UEFA Europa League Team of the Week was given to Papastathopoulos.

Papastathopoulos was forced off during Greece's 2–0 loss to Finland on October 15, 2018, after spraining his ankle. Since Unai Emery took over the reins in the summer, Papastathopoulos has been at the heart of Unai Emery's defense and a fixture in a winning streak of nine games.

On February 21, 2019, he scored his second goal for Arsenal, capitalizing on a missed punch by BATE Borisov goalkeeper Denis Scherbitskiy to head the ball into an empty net following a corner kick from Granit Xhaka, securing a 3–0 home win for Arsenal and advancing them to the Round of 32 of the 2018–19 UEFA Europa League.

After playing a key part in Arsenal's 2–0 victory against Napoli in the first leg of the quarter-finals, Papastathopoulos was nominated to the UEFA Europa League's 'Team of the Week' on April 12, 2019.

Along with Petr ech, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, and Aaron Ramsey, he was one of four Arsenal players chosen.

Papastathopoulos scored his first goal in the English Premier League on April 24, 2019, with a close-range header from a corner kick, although

Arsenal

lost 1–3 against Wolverhampton Wanderers.

He made his UEFA Europa League Final debut on May 29, 2019, against Chelsea, which Arsenal lost 4–1. Arsenal have not let up four goals in a European match since a 5–1 defeat to Bayern Munich in March 2017.

In a 2–2 draw at home on October 27, 2019, Papastathopoulos made his 50th appearance and scored his first goal of the season after Crystal Palace failed to clear Nicolas Pépé's corner.

Mikel Arteta's first victory as Arsenal manager came on January 1, 2020, when he scored a close-range goal in a 2–0 win against Manchester United. He was selected Man of the Match by Sky Sports.

He scored a volley to give Arsenal the lead in a 2–0 away victory against Portsmouth on March 2, 2020, allowing Arsenal to become the first club to reach the FA Cup quarter-finals.

In August 1, 2020, Papastathopoulos came on as a late replacement in the FA Cup Final between Arsenal and

Chelsea

, which Arsenal won for the 14th time.

Papastathopoulos and Mesut Ozil were notably left out of Arsenal's Premier League and Europa League teams for the 2020–21 season, making them eligible for just one League Cup game between October and January.

Arsenal confirmed Papastathopoulos' departure from the club on January 20, 2021, after his contract was terminated "by mutual agreement."

Olympiacos

Papastathopoulos signed a two-year deal with Olympiacos on January 25, 2021. He scored his first goal for the club in a 1–0 home victory against Asteras Tripolis on April 21, 2021.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos international career

Papastathopoulos was called up to the Greek senior squad on February 1, 2008, and made his debut in a 1–0 friendly win against the Czech Republic on February 5, 2008.

On May 27, 2008, Otto Rehhagel revealed the Greece roster for UEFA Euro 2008, and Papastathopoulos was the unlucky player who was cut from the tentative squad of 24 to the final 23-man selection.

After getting two yellow cards in the first game of the tournament against co-hosts Poland, Papastathopoulos became the first player to be sent off at UEFA Euro 2012, after what observers deemed two questionable decisions by referee Carlos Velasco Carballo.

Papastathopoulos was nominated to Greece's roster for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in June 2014. He started each of the team's group games, assisting in their clean sheet against Japan.

Papastathopoulos scored his first international goal in the round of 16 against Costa Rica, equalizing in second-half stoppage time. The Greeks were finally beaten 5–3 by the Central American champions in a penalty shootout.

When speaking to EPO president Evangelos Grammenos on June 11, 2019, following the defeat to Armenia at the Olympic Stadium, Papastathopoulos urged for quick changes to the Greek national team set-up, and he reportedly demanded that Angelos Anastasiadis be dismissed from his job as head coach.

Some more facts about Sokratis Papastathopoulos:

An important

fact about Sokratis Papastathopoulos

is that he left for Werder Bremen on loan a year and a day after his transfer to AC Milan was announced. Werder Bremen had an option to buy him.

After an impressive season, it was used in Bremen, and Werder paid 5,000,000 for the Greek. Werder, on the other hand, finished fourteenth in the second season.

On May 24, 2013, a day before Borussia Dortmund's Champions League final against Bayern Munich, the club announced the acquisition of Sokratis from Werder Bremen for €9,500,000. On July 27, he made his official debut for the club against Bayern Munich in the DFL Supercup.

As a substitute, he assisted Dortmund to a 4-2 victory over Bayern, earning him his first club prize. He scored his first goal for Borussia Dortmund in a 6-1 win over VfB Stuttgart on November 1, 2013. He was named to the Bundesliga season's best team after a strong first year.

After Jürgen Klopp left for Liverpool as manager in the summer of 2015, Sokratis drew interest from a number of English clubs. Sokratis was also liked by new coach Thomas Tuchel, so on October 26, 2015, Sokratis extended his contract until the summer of 2019.

Sokratis played his 100th Bundesliga game for Borussia Dortmund on January 30, 2016, against FC Ingolstadt 04. Sokratis was with Borussia Dortmund in the DFB-Pokal final for the fourth consecutive year on May 27, 2017, but after three defeats against Bayern Munich (2x) and VfL Wolfsburg, Sokratis was too strong for Eintracht Frankfurt in the 2017 edition.

The following year, he captained Borussia Dortmund, but they were defeated on penalties by Bayern Munich in the DFL-Supdercup. In the 2017-18 season, Borussia Dortmund finished fourth, and it was Sokratis' final year in Dortmund. In five seasons, he appeared in 198 games and scored ten goals.

On July 2, 2018, Arsenal announced that Sokratis had joined the club for a fee of 16,000,000 and had been assigned the number 5 jersey.

On August 12, he made his Arsenal debut in a 2-0 loss to Manchester City. On 4 October, he scored his first goal for Arsenal in a 3–0 Europa League win over FK Qaraba.

An important fact about Sokratis Papastathopoulos is that he was at Arsenal's base on May 29, 2019, during the Europa League final against Chelsea, which Arsenal lost 4-1.

Sokratis lost his starting spot after trainer Unai Emery resigned and was replaced by new trainer

Mikel Arteta

midway through the 2019/20 season. Arsenal defeated Chelsea in the FA Cup final on August 1, 2020. In the second half, Sokratis came on as a substitute. He joined Olympiakos in January 2021.

He himself missed the final after receiving a second yellow card in the semi-final against Germany. After the images showed that Papastathopoulos did not make a mistake, referee Kevin Blom whistled the semi-final against Germany and later apologized him.

On February 6, 2008, Sokratis Papastathopoulos made his Greece national football team debut against Finland (2–1). He took over for Sotirios Kyrgiakos after 71 minutes.

Two years later, national coach Otto Rehhagel took him to the 2010 FIFA World Cup. In the second group stage match against Nigeria, he made his first appearance as a starter. Greece won its first World Cup match by a score of 2–1.

After 37 minutes, Papastathopoulos was replaced by Georgios Samaras, as Rehhagel wanted to bring in an extra attacker following the red card of Nigerian Sani Kaita.

From start to finish, he played the third group match against Argentina (0–2). Papastathopoulos also represented Greece in the 2012 European Football Championship in Poland and Ukraine, where national team coach Fernando Santos' squad was eliminated in the quarter-finals by Germany (4–2).

On May 19, 2014, he was named to the FIFA World Cup squad in Brazil. As a central defender, he was passed three times by Colombian forwards in the first game (3–0 loss). He scored his first international goal in the eighth final against Costa Rica, but was unable to avoid elimination on penalties.

Papastathopoulos and his teammates were unable to qualify for either the 2016 European Championship or the 2018 World Cup. Greece had to play play-offs against Croatia after finishing second in Group H of the World Cup qualifiers.

Papastathopoulos scored in the first of those games, but the Croats also did so four times. The 0–0 in the rematch three days later was enough to qualify them.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos social media

Regarding

Sokratis Papastathopoulos social media

, it should be mentioned that he has an Instagram page (

@sokratispapa.official

) with more than 490k followers. On the page, we can see various pictures of him along with his fans and family.

He also has a Twitter account (

@SokratisPapa5

) with 130k followers. He often posts new stuff on his Twitter page.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos body measurements

Speaking about

Sokratis Papastathopoulos body measurements

, it should be mentioned that the player is 186cm and 82kg.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos net worth and salary

Sokratis Papastathopoulos' net worth

is estimated to be around $14 million, according to Wikipedia, Forbes, and Business Insider.

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