AGONA Profile: Giorgos Masouras, the promising Greek winger hoping to progress in Piraeus
During the week, Olympiacos confirmed the signing of winger Giorgos Masouras from Panionios, with the Erythrolefkoi boosting their attacking options. AGONAsport analyses the Greek’s career to date.
EARLY MOVE TO ATHENS
Masouras has now been living in the bustling Greek capital for eight years, but it wasn’t easy to adapt to the speed and intensity of city life. On January 1, 1994, Masouras was born in the small village of Kechrinia located in the Amfilochia region which possesses a small population of just 750 people! In his hometown, Masouras had began playing football, but it wasn’t until he made the move to Athens when he really started to take the sport seriously.
FIRST SERIOUS STEPS AT ILISIAKOS
His first place of notable settlement was Ilisiakos. The Athens based organisation, which has spent the vast majority of its existence playing in the lower leagues, offered Masouras a chance to begin establishing himself in 2012. In the Gamma Ethniki, Masouras managed to make a strong impression, especially in the 2013/2014 campaign when Ilisiakos finished in second place of Group 6 behind Athenian giants AEK.
Impressed by his performances, Super League outfit Panionios made a move for Masouras in July 2014, concluding a contract with the player to take him to Nea Smyrni and give him his first taste of the highest level.
SUCCESS IN NEA SMYRNI
The progression of Masouras at Panionios has been clear for all to see. With every passing season, the 25-year old has gradually taken his game up a notch, something which resulted in Masouras earning his maiden call-up to the senior Greek national team in late 2018 and transferring to Piraeus giants Olympiacos.
In his first season in Nea Smyrni, Masouras was mainly used as an impact substitute in the latter stages of matches, however that all changed in the 2015/2016 campaign. During that specific Super League season, he made 30 appearances, contributing with one goal in the European playoffs. In the 2016/2017 season, Masouras continued improving as he scored six Super League goals, helping Panionios qualify for the UEFA Europa League preliminary rounds.
His statistics were even better in the 2017/2018 campaign (eight goals, one assist in all competitions), and after starting the current season with six Super League goals and one assist in a mere 14 matches, Olympiacos decided to snap him up for an undisclosed fee. Masouras was gifted his Ethniki Omada debut by Angelos Anastasiadis in a 0:1 UEFA Nations League defeat to Estonia on November 18, and although Greece dropped a bitter defeat, he was lively on the right flank. In the past, Masouras competed in eight matches for the under 21 Greek national team.
NEW CHALLENGE AT OLYMPIACOS
The fact that Olympiacos came calling certainly proves Masouras is full of potential, but will he be allowed to continue developing in Piraeus? Taking into account the large squad which Olympiacos boast, and the number of wingers in the Thrylos team, there is a danger that Masouras will sit on the sidelines at what is a crucial period in his career.
In the past, many seemingly talented, gifted players have gleefully accepted the opportunity to represent Olympiacos, but then subsequently failed to make the grade. While he was a leading light for Panionios, Masouras will have a different kind of pressure to deal with at the Karaiskakis Stadium, and he will be required to fight extremely hard to earn a spot in the Olympiacos line-up.
Nevertheless, unlike some Olympiacos teammates, Masouras is flexible. The Greek international has the ability to play anywhere across the attacking line, and if needed, he can move further forward to become the second striker. Masouras is comfortable playing on either flank, and he also offers an alternative to Konstantinos Fortounis in the number 10 role.