National soccer team eyes move out of Athens

The national soccer team may have satisfied fans with its performance in the 1-1 friendly draw with Italy on Wednesday, but the fans did not satisfy the team with turnout for the game. No more than 8,000 fans watched Greece’s match against world champion Italy at the Karaiskaki Stadium in Piraeus, which led to calls by players and the coach to move Greece’s games away from that ground and, if possible, from Athens. «Maybe if we had played in Patras or in Crete the stadium would have been full,» said manager Otto Rehhagel after the game, while players said off the record that the team would be better off if it plays its crucial next game against Israel for the qualifying group of the World Cup in Crete and not in Athens. Their view was reportedly echoed by the team’s general manager, Takis Fyssas. Already the soccer federation has been forced to announce, on Thursday, that the friendly game with Denmark in February will be played in Volos.