Fetfatzidis, McKay and Evangelou soon to be unveiled by Olympiacos
Olympiacos are continuing to put 2018/2019 season preparations in place, with the Thrylos edging closer to sealing a number of excellent deals.
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Giannis Fetfatzidis, the talented Greek midfielder who scrapped his contract with Al Ahli, has agreed terms with Olympiacos on a three-year deal. However, in order to finalise the transfer, Olympiacos need to complete standard procedures with Al Ahli and receive the required paperwork. Once that is all cleared up, the Piraeus outfit will formally reveal the transfer which brings Fetfatzidis back to his homeland after five years abroad. Having emerged from the Olympiacos system, Fetfatzidis represented the Thrylos’ senior side between 2009 and 2013, later playing for Genoa, Chievo and Al Ahli. He did sign to stay at Al Ahli until 2019, but after he expressed his desire to leave, the Saudi Arabian club agreed to cancel Fetfatzidis’ contract.
Another player on the verge of joining Olympiacos is 23-year old Barrie McKay, the out of favour Nottingham Forest winger. Evangelos Marinakis, owner of both Olympiacos and Nottingham, is willing to give McKay a chance in Piraeus, impressed by the Scot’s displays in 26 Championship matches during the 2017/2018 season. Possessing the ability to play either as a striker or a winger, McKay is a dangerous player for the opponents to handle, capable of creating golden goalscoring opportunities. According to the media in Greece, the transfer will be announced in the coming days.
Just like Fetfatzidis and McKay, 19-year old promising defender Stefanos Evangelou will soon be wearing the Olympiacos shirt. Available on a free from arch-rivals Panathinaikos, Evangelou is highly regarded among the club’s management, catching the eye in a handful of appearances for Panathinaikos’ main team. Boasting real potential, Evangelou is a player for the future and will hope to earn the trust of incoming head coach Pedro Martins.
On the other hand, Olympiacos have encountered difficulties elsewhere, virtually forced to abandon their chase of Argentinian defender Cristian Lema and Bosnian midfielder Sanjin Prcic. 27-year old Lema, soon to turn a free agent when his Belgrano contract runs out in late June, received a healthy offer from Olympiacos, but the Thrylos are tired of waiting for a response and took the decision to cease their interest. The exact same can be said for Rennes star Prcic.
With the transfers of Fetfatzidis, McKay and Evangelou in the bag, Olympiacos are switching their attentions to strengthening the squad even further, on the lookout for a central defender, right-back, holding midfielder, winger and at least one striker. Andreas Bouchalakis, a teammate of McKay at Nottingham Forest, is searching for a move back to Greece and Olympiacos supremo Marinakis appears to be willing to give him an opportunity in Piraeus.
Recently, reports suggested diminutive German midfielder Marko Marin was departing Olympiacos for Red Star Belgrade, but he eventually turned down the Serbians after meeting with club representatives. Unless a different club shows interest in Marin, he will stay put in Piraeus, although rumours have stated that teams from Asia are thinking about paying Marin big money to tempt him to the Far East.
Earlier in the year, everything was pointing towards an exit for attacking midfielder Vadis Odjidja-Ofoe, but the 29-year old Belgian doesn’t seem to be in a hurry to leave Greece. Earning 1.3 million euros a year, Ofoe isn’t keen on an transfer, however Olympiacos are eager to take him off their wage bill and will continue to search for a solution.