Foreign Affairs
Club President threatens his own players with a gun during football match

Unusual scenes took place at a football match recently as the President of a Greek club did not accept the fact that a last-minute goal was disallowed during a Super League football match.

The incident happened a few minutes before the end of the game between PAOK Thessaloniki and AEK Athens which was being played at the Toumba stadium.   It was a very important match between Thessaloniki who are in third place in the championships and the Athens team which is at the top of the league.

As soon as the PAOK President Ivan Savvidis noticed that the referee had disallowed Fernando Valera’s goal, which would have overturned the 0-0 tied result, he went out on the football pitch armed with a gun and threatened the players of his own team to leave the pitch as a sign of protest.

The game was abandoned two hours after the goal was scored, and there were those who said that at the beginning, the referee Giorgos Kominis had accepted it, however in the confusion which broke out during the game, it was stated that the goal had been disallowed

The Thessaloniki players remained on the pitch arguing about the disallowed goal which had been scored during injury time, while the players of the rival team ran off to their dressing rooms and remained locked in there for a long time until the situation was brought under control.

The POAK President was escorted out of the stadium by the armed forces while the Athens team said that they would be reporting the case to the Police for action to be taken against Savvidis.

According to foreign media, Savvidis had to be removed from the pitch twice, accompanied by his bodyguards. The second time he invaded the pitch he removed his jacked and everyone could see that he was armed.

Officials of the AEK said that the first time he was removed, the POAK President threatened the referee while he was being escorted off the pitch. It is being reported that Savvidis is one of the richest people in Russia and is a good friend of President Vladimir Putin.

Born in Georgia, but holding dual Greek and Russian citizenship, Savvidis purchased PAOK Thessaloniki in 2012 and since he has been at the helm, he led them to winning the Greek Cup last season.

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