20 February 2004
Just close your eyes for a moment and dream that you are in the future. Not the too distant future, just eight months ahead from now. It's October and the new season has begun in Greece's football stadia. Which stadia are these?
First of all, the brand new Karaiskaki Stadium of Olympiakos in Piraeus.
The completely refurbished Athens Olympic Stadium with Calatrava's stunning new roof. Just a few months after the Olympics, the stadium temporarily hosts both Panathinaikos and AEK, as their two new home grounds are under construction and will be ready soon.
The four fully upgraded stadia of Thessaloniki - Toumba, Kaftanzoglio, Harilaou, and even the modest but also refurbished Kalamaria. They welcome the fans of PAOK, Iraklis, Aris, and Apollon, who can't believe their eyes as they sit on their stands.
The brand new Pancretan Stadium, which now hosts OFI.
The brand new Panthessalian Stadium, where promoted Niki Volou now play.
Also, the small but modern Xanthi Stadium, the recently upgraded Kallithea Stadium with its brand new curved stand, even the old Nea Smyrni with its modern and sleek roof. There are still of course some teams that play in crumbling small grounds, but these are now a very small minority in the league.
I am sure you like this dream. It's a pity, since you simply must wake up! You must get ready for next Sunday's match in the ultramodern, space-age Leoforos!
Away fans equated to criminals (13 January 2004)
Our new look (15 December 2003)