Skibbe announces Greek roster for upcoming playoffs against Croatia
Michael Skibbe announced Greece’s roster for the upcoming World Cup qualifying playoffs against Croatia. The newest name to the roster is Dimitris Pelkas while Tasos Donis was left out due to injury.
Michael Skibbe called up 25 players to the Greek roster for next week's World Cup qualifying playoffs against Croatia with the selections housing no suprises. The German coach announced the roster on Monday with one new face to the squad, PAOK’s Dimitris Pelkas. The youngster was called up for the first time this qualifying campaign (previous call up was under Skibbe in friendlies against Turkey and Luxembourg) and will fill the gap of the injured Tasos Donis and Petros Mantalos, who were both left off the roster.
Lazaros Christodoulopoulos was called up for a second go around after receiving his first cap of the qualifiers in September against Gibraltar. The selections also feature Sturm Graz’s Babis Lykogiannis, who was left off the roster in September, but was called up previously in the campaign.
To the delight of the Greek fans, both Kostas Manolas and Vasilis Torosidis, who have been troubled by recent injuries, were included in the roster. However, FIFA’s shock decision to suspend Kostas Manolas for the first leg due to a fair play violation will leave the Roma man unavailable for the trip to Zagreb. AEK’s in-form Michalis Bakakis was left out yet again meaning that Skibbe expects Torosidis to be fully fit for the two legs.
The Greek team wil met on Monday and undergo their first training session at Agios Kosmas. A reminder, Greece will travel to Zagreb for the first leg on November 9th at 2:45 PM EST (9:45 PM local Greek Time) and the return leg will be played at the Karaiskakis stadium three days later on November 12th at 2:45 PM EST (9:45 PM local Greek time).
Below is Greece’s 25-man roster:
Goalkeepers: Giannis Anestis (AEK), Stefanos Kapino (Olympiacos), Orestis Karnezis (Watford)
Defenders: Vassilis Torosidis (Bologna), Sokratis Papastathopoulos (B. Dortmund), Kostas Manolas (Roma), Panagiotis Retsos (Bayer Leverkusen), Kyriakos Papadopoulos (Hamburg), Kostas Stafylidis (Augsburg), Giorgos Tzavellas (Alanyaspor), Babis Lykogiannis (Sturm Graz)
Midfielders: Panagiotis Tachtsidis (Olympiacos), Andreas Samaris (Benfica), Giannis Maniatis (Alyanspor), Alexandros Tziolis (Al-Fayha), Carlos Zeca (FC Kobehavn), Dimitris Kourbelis (Panathinaikos), Kostas Fortounis (Olympiacos), Dimitris Pelkas (PAOK), Giannis Gianniotas (Real Valladolid), Lazaros Christodoulopoulos (AEK)
Forwards: Dimitris Diamantakos (Karlsruhe), Kostas Mitroglou (Marseille), Tasos Bakasetas (AEK), Apostolos Vellios (Nottinghame Forest)