Giannakopoulos Was A Whisker Away From Acquiring Panathinaikos FC
Pairoj Piempongsant and Pan Asia have held successful talks with Giannis Alafouzos and are now tipped to takeover Panathinaikos FC within the next few weeks. However, things could have gone down a very different path.
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History has a funny way of repeating itself. In 1979, the Giannakopoulos family came very close to acquiring the Football Club, only for Giorgos Vardinogiannis to complete a deal. Fast forward to 2018 and it could have been Dimitris Giannakopoulos fulfilling a family dream. The fiery owner of the Basketball Club met with Alafouzos twice during the last week.
The first meeting that took place on Tuesday night lasted for more than 3 hours and it reportedly went very well. Giannakopoulos’ specific proposal entailed him chipping in with 4 million Euro to in order to cover the immediate needs in terms of debts. 70% of the total amount would have gone towards the team and the remaining 30% to Alafouzos himself. All this for the “Athens Alive” project at the OAKA precinct to come to fruition.
Initially, Alafouzos was happy with the offer and a second meeting was scheduled for Friday night. During this meeting, however, Alafouzos informed Giannakopoulos that he had received a better offer (from Pan Asia). The two men were meant to go through the finer details of the deal but it only lasted 11 minutes and just like that, Giannakopoulos lost the chance to acquire Panathinaikos FC.
Things got so close that a joint press conference was scheduled for next week to announce a takeover from Giannakopoulos. Throughout the entire process it was agreed that no information would be leaked. Since then, it is Piempongsant that is in the box seat to takeover after 6 years under the Alafouzos regime.
Giannakopoulos confirmed just how close he came via Instagram, uploading a series of text messages between the pair and also stated “everything is true”. In one message, Alafouzos criticises Giannakopoulos and said he will pay for his anger in what can only be described as a threatening text. Alafouzos also suggested that Giannakopoulos was a “liar”.
Giannakopoulos is not known for being calm and the word ‘calmness’ is rarely associated with Panathinaikos. The relationship between the two has now clearly reached breaking point and is beyond frosty. It will be interesting to see how this story ends.