Record-setter set to stop

Panathinaikos’s veteran goal-scoring machine Krzysztof Warzycha, who has broken club scoring and appearance records over a 14-year career with the Athens club, is preparing to retire. The Polish striker, whose latest contract with Panathinaikos is set to expire, was aiming for a six-month extension as part of his bid to break the Greek League’s all-time scoring record of 260 goals held by the retired Thomas Mavros, and, possibly, a title with the Athens club this season. «First, I’m going to talk with the club president and then I’ll decide. But I’m probably going to stop,» the 39-year-old veteran told his teammates yesterday. His current contract expires tomorrow. Warzycha was hoping to extend it right through the end of the season. According to sources, the club’s administration was not willing to offer the player a short-term contract that would maintain a remuneration package similar to that of the current deal which, moreover, would reflect the player’s historic contribution to Panathinaikos over his 14-year course with the Athens club. Though Warzycha is believed to be absolutely certain that he will not be offered a favorable six-month extension to his current contract, he will make his final decision following official talks with Panathinaikos’s administration today. Should the offer merely be a symbolic one, the player indicated that he will announce his retirement. The striker, who in more recent years would come on as a substitute with his phenomenal scoring ability intact, holds the goal-scoring record at Panathinaikos with an average of approximately a goal every two games in over 500 league, cup and European competition games over 14 seasons. Mavros, the Greek League’s all-time record scorer, accumulated his 260-goal figure between 1971 and 1991 with Panionios, AEK, and Panionios, again, for his career finale. Two seasons ago, the long-serving player also broke the Athens club’s European appearance record after notching up his 56th appearance against Real Mallorca in a Champions League game. The previous record was held by defender Stratos Apostolakis, who went on to serve as a member of the club’s coaching staff. Chances of the much-loved Polish player – both at Panathinaikos and beyond – continuing his career elsewhere for a crack at the Greek League’s all-time scoring record appear unlikely.

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