Koutroubis Gone, Vlachodimos Staying
Last week, one of the longest serving players in the current Panathinaikos squad, Giorgos Koutroubis, was informed his services were no longer required and that the club wanted to part ways immediately while all look as if Odisseas Vlachodimos will remain with Panathinaikos until the summer.
The defender, who was signed from city rivals AEK in the summer of 2013 enjoyed mixed results with many ups and downs. He was part of the victorious team that won the Greek Cup in 2014 but he was always subject to criticism from fans due to being error prone and sloppy both with and without the ball. This news is also in line with what manager Marinos Ouzounidis is trying to achieve - building a squad with the right attitude with players that are mentally strong enough.
It is expected Koutroubis will look for an move overseas next month as there was interest from Italy in the summer. During the meeting, he was informed of the Greens’ proposal to accept his accrued money and then sign the termination of his contract. It is believed the money owed is 380,000 Euro due to the new contract he signed under former manager Andrea Stramaccioni.
Instead, the defender has called for the Greens to receive a transfer ban and points deductions if they do not comply with court orders. It is perhaps fitting that his last game for the club was the 4-0 drubbing against PAOK at Toumba, where Ouzounidis had seen enough. During his time he made 158 appearances with a return of 3 goals and 5 assists and was recently called up by Ethniki manager Michael Skibbe to the National Team squad.
In other news, it is tipped goalkeeper Odisseas Vlachodimos will remain a Panathinaikos player until the end of the season with Benfica deciding it would be best for him to stay in Athens as they are settled in the position. When the deal for the player was made between the two clubs, it was agreed that the Portuguese outfit would inform Panathinaikos of their decision by the 15th of December. Nothing has come through so barring a crazy turn of events Vlachodimos will see out the rest of the season in Greece.