SPORTS

Schalke man earns Greece call-up

Kyriakos Papadopoulos?s impressive performances with German cup winner and Champions League semifinalist Schalke 04 earned him a call-up to the national team on May 23 for the games against Malta and Ecuador in June.

Greece manager Fernando Santos also brought back Alexandros Tziolis now that the Racing Santander player has recovered from his serious injury.

Suspended Sokratis Papastathopoulos and injured Giorgos Tzavellas have been left out of the squad for the Euro 2012 qualifier against Malta on June 4 in Piraeus and the friendly against Ecuador on June 7 in New York.

The other foreign-based players to have received invitations (the Greece-based ones will be called up after the end of the Super League playoffs) are Giorgos Samaras of Celtic, Bologna?s Vangelis Moras and Panayiotis Kone of Brescia.

Meanwhile, the federation has reportedly decided that the national team?s new training center at Goudi in northeast Athens, will be named after former Greece coach Otto Rehhagel, who led the national squad to its Euro 2004 triumph. The training center is set to be completed by mid-June.

On Sunday, May 22, the national Under-19 team managed to qualify for the finals of the European Championship that will take place this summer in Romania.

Greece will be one of eight finalists. The draw for the finals will take place on June 8, with the tournament scheduled for July 20 to August 1.