FIFA warns of ‘Grexit’ if action not taken to purge Greek soccer


The head of a committee representing world soccer body FIFA on Wednesday called on authorities to take action to curb violence in Greek soccer or see Greek clubs excluded from international competition.

"This behavior has pushed us to come here to make recommendations," Herbert Hubel, the head of the FIFA committee set up last summer to monitor the Greek soccer federation, told a press conference in Athens.

"The Grexit that looked distant is no longer. Greek football reached the edge of the cliff," he said.

Hubel made his statements following talks with Greece's alternate minister of sports Giorgos Vassiliadis and Greek soccer federation president Evangelos Grammenos who briefed him on the situation.

Long plagued by violence, Greek soccer was plunged into fresh turmoil this week after the chairman of Thessaloniki team PAOK, Russian-Greek businessman Ivan Savvidis, stormed the pitch during a match on Sunday evening with what appeared to be a gun strapped to his hip.

A sports prosecutor on Wednesday took disciplinary action against Savvidis who faces a fine of at least 50,000 euros and a stadium ban of three to five years.

His club faces relegation.