PAO owners name president

Panathinaikos’s new team of shareholders held their first meeting yesterday, appointing shipowner Nikos Pateras as the club’s new president, and declared their satisfaction with the talks. Veteran players Antonis Antoniadis and Costas Antoniou were appointed vice president and director of the club’s soccer division respectively. Pateras was one of four shareholders at the meeting. Majority shareholder Yiannis Vardinoyiannis, businessman Andreas Vgenopoulos and Pavlos Giannnakopoulos, co-owner of the club’s basketball division, were the other three who attended. «This is a heavy load that we will carry,» were Pateras’s first words to reporters yesterday. Pateras said the club hoped to be in a position to name its new coach by the end of the week. The club’s interest in Aris coach Dusan Bajevic fell through last week when the Serb met with Vardinoyiannis to clarify his intentions of remaining with the Thessaloniki team. Vardinoyiannis’s decision to increase the share capital at the club will lead to an injection of approximately 80 million euros into the soccer club’s coffers. «This is a significant day. We’re beginning an effort that we must all participate in. We proved that when we meet and discuss we can reach decisions and make useful assumptions,» said Vardinoyiannis. «Right now, it is the present that matters, the future will reveal itself. We’re optimistic,» he continued. In his comments, Vgenopoulos noted: «The day that Yiannis Vardinoyiannis decided to increase the share capital was a historic moment. We have had plenty of historic moments at Panathinaikos recently. The day we lift the championship [trophy] will also be historic. What is certain is that a page has turned.»