Cardoso and Liberopoulos heading for exit door
AEK owner Dimitris Melissanidis has reportedly sacked Miguel Cardoso after losing to Xanthi on the opening matchday of the 2019/2020 Super League, while Nikos Liberopoulos resigned.
On Sunday evening, AEK’s dreadful start to the campaign continued, as the Enosis conceded a miserable 2-1 defeat to Xanthi at the Olympic Stadium. AEK were coming off the back of a thoroughly disappointing 3-1 home loss against Trabzonspor in the UEFA Europa League.
AEK captain Petros Mantalos was notably upset after the defeat:
Reports have subsequently revealed that Melissanidis announced his decision to fire Cardoso when speaking to the team in the dressing room.
Cardoso, 47, only joined AEK this summer as a replacement for Manolo Jimenez. However, the Portuguese manager has endured a nightmare beginning to the season, with his team giving tepid performances in all four competitive matches. Melissanidis consequently decided to sack him with immediate effect.
“They’re all gone!” exclaimed Melissanidis when furious AEK supporters vented their frustrations at the OAKA.
Liberopoulos, the AEK technical director, submitted his resignation after losing to Xanthi: “I take responsibility for the situation, so I am resigning,” said the 44-year-old. The former footballer will hold a meeting with Minas Lysandrou in the morning.
It’s also expected that long-term associate of Melissanidis, Vasilis Dimitriadis, will also receive the sack.
In May, Cardoso penned a two-year deal with the Athenian organisation, so it remains to be seen how much compensation AEK have to pay the Portuguese coach in order to terminate his contract. In the meantime, Melissanidis will search for a new manager.
Nikos Kostenoglou is in the running to manage the team in the upcoming matches against Trabzonspor and Asteras Tripolis.
The team return to action on Thursday in the second leg of the Europa League playoff tie against Trabzonspor. AEK require at least three goals in Turkey to prolong their brief European journey.