Panathinaikos replaces Ferreira with Rocha

By George Georgakopoulos

Panathinaikos has replaced resigned coach Jesualdo Ferreira with Juan Ramon Rocha, the Athens club announced late on Wednesday.

Ferreira, formerly of FC Porto, tendered his resignation earlier on Wednesday in his meeting with club president Yiannis Alafouzos, following a string of poor performances that saw Panathinaikos score just three wins in 10 league games and two points out of four matches in its Europa League group.

The 66-year-old Portuguese, who got hired by the Greens in November 2010, said in a statement published a few minutes after the announcement of his departure that he felt he was a problem for Panathinaikos.

"I have got to the point where I cannot help Panathinaikos anymore, mainly due to the big reaction against me. I feel I now am a problem for Panathinaikos and not a solution to a problem, as I was before,» stated Ferreira, who also referred to the major corruption issues within Greek soccer.

Argentine Rocha, until Wednesday the youth team coach, will sit on the Panathinaikos bench from the next league match on Sunday against PAOK.

"Panathinaikos has entered a critical stage and needs us all on its side: The board, the players, the fans, and generally anyone who can help. I am always at the club's disposal and in this sense I coming to help at this difficult moment,» was the first statement by Rocha upon his return to the post he also held from 1994 to 1996 and briefly in 1999.