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Suggested Call Ups, Starting 11


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14 hours ago, paokarag4 said:

Looks like Masouras and Vrousai are out of the friendlies, Xatzigiovannis has been called up as a replacement. 

https://www.novasports.gr/sport/podosfairo/event/nations-league/article/12353866/ethniki-klithike-o-xatzigiovanis/

You, my cute aussie, are the best source for news. Better than that dude on twitter who gets everything wrong all the guy. But not better than that cute PAOK reporter.

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Anorthosis midfielder and former NT member Lazaros said he deserved a callup saying he does not know many Greek midfielders who have 12 goals this season. He has been playing well in the Cypriot league so maybe Poyet could have given him a look but at 35 its a long shot that he would have any role in our Euro aspirations.

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Three midfielders to consider if they show form when back from injury and not necessarily picked automatically are Fortounis, Galanopoulos and Koubelis.

I'm lead to believe that Manolas is not in the form required for the Ethniki, Sok and Siovas have still have issues with the EPO (more than likely with technical director Fyssas), and that Mavropanos along with Hatzidiakos are the form CB duo right now. Back ups to them would be Goutas and likely Kargas.

Saliakas was unlucky not to have been chosen in this lot of friendlies as he is showing good form.

Vlahodimos is a likely candidate as captain due to his excellent form at SL Benfica.

 

Edited by ausgreek
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From what we have gathered in these last few months of both national and club games:

For the first time in a while, we are looking great at goal keeper - Vlach is top notch and Paschalakis is a great player to have as your reserve

IF and I mean IF Lyratzis can continue to improve the way he has lately and its not just a flash in the pan, then we potentially have the left back and right back position down. AGAIN HUUUGE IF, but if we are being a little optimistic, that is 3 def/keeping positions locked in. Also, enough going back and forth up front. Giakoumakis has had 2 hat tricks and a brace in the last month of games at Celtic, while being hurt and missing multiple games in between. HE IS OUR STRIKER PERIOD. I like Pavlidis, Douvikas, Tziolis and likes of them but all this constant rotation upfront is not good for anyone. He deserves our full support and more than just one game to get familiar with the team only to get thrown on the bench the next game in favor of douvikas. 

Finally, similarly to Lyratzis, I say you give Alexandropolous the chance to play consistently and grow in that defensive mid role. Our CB pairings are too s%$#! to not have a defensive mid at all times. Lets not kid ourselves, the days of prime Sokratis, Manolas, Kyriakos, even Tzavellas are long gone. 

This gives us this line up 

                     Vlach                                  

Lyratzis                            Tsimikas

              Alexandropoulos

                                                

                                 

               Giakoumakis 

I know it is now the running joke to s%$#! on Bakasetas, and he 100% deserves it but he does play hard tho and scored some keys goals, mostly penalties but still doesnt take away from the fact that he just destroys our build up. 

Bouchalakis is arguably even worse. Straight poop, very rarely when I watch pro soccer do I think "this guy plays like he was just given kit from off the streets and taught the rules of the game 10 min before kick off" - jaw droppingly awful

Siopis is hot and cold but mostly cold

Pelkas made the stupid decision to go to an even worse league than ours and is paying for it, his form is awful and is a shadow of the PAOK wonder boy people were claiming he was 

I like Tziolis and I am tempted to make him another automatic member on the team but has really had a disappointing year besides one impressive cup appearance for Norwich.

Limnios Pelkas and Tziolis should have stayed at Paok longer ( yes I am biased lol) because again just wow the fall off

If Fortounis comes back like his former self, sure you can slot him in that 10 spot behind Giakoumakis as a lock, but we gotta see it first. If not, Pavlidis should start next to Giakoumakis as a partnership instead, but also not a lock.

We have no midfield, period 

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2 hours ago, kolokotronis99tripoli said:

From what we have gathered in these last few months of both national and club games:

For the first time in a while, we are looking great at goal keeper - Vlach is top notch and Paschalakis is a great player to have as your reserve

IF and I mean IF Lyratzis can continue to improve the way he has lately and its not just a flash in the pan, then we potentially have the left back and right back position down. AGAIN HUUUGE IF, but if we are being a little optimistic, that is 3 def/keeping positions locked in. Also, enough going back and forth up front. Giakoumakis has had 2 hat tricks and a brace in the last month of games at Celtic, while being hurt and missing multiple games in between. HE IS OUR STRIKER PERIOD. I like Pavlidis, Douvikas, Tziolis and likes of them but all this constant rotation upfront is not good for anyone. He deserves our full support and more than just one game to get familiar with the team only to get thrown on the bench the next game in favor of douvikas. 

Finally, similarly to Lyratzis, I say you give Alexandropolous the chance to play consistently and grow in that defensive mid role. Our CB pairings are too s%$#! to not have a defensive mid at all times. Lets not kid ourselves, the days of prime Sokratis, Manolas, Kyriakos, even Tzavellas are long gone. 

This gives us this line up 

                     Vlach                                  

Lyratzis                            Tsimikas

              Alexandropoulos

                                                

                                 

               Giakoumakis 

I know it is now the running joke to s%$#! on Bakasetas, and he 100% deserves it but he does play hard tho and scored some keys goals, mostly penalties but still doesnt take away from the fact that he just destroys our build up. 

Bouchalakis is arguably even worse. Straight poop, very rarely when I watch pro soccer do I think "this guy plays like he was just given kit from off the streets and taught the rules of the game 10 min before kick off" - jaw droppingly awful

Siopis is hot and cold but mostly cold

Pelkas made the stupid decision to go to an even worse league than ours and is paying for it, his form is awful and is a shadow of the PAOK wonder boy people were claiming he was 

I like Tziolis and I am tempted to make him another automatic member on the team but has really had a disappointing year besides one impressive cup appearance for Norwich.

Limnios Pelkas and Tziolis should have stayed at Paok longer ( yes I am biased lol) because again just wow the fall off

If Fortounis comes back like his former self, sure you can slot him in that 10 spot behind Giakoumakis as a lock, but we gotta see it first. If not, Pavlidis should start next to Giakoumakis as a partnership instead, but also not a lock.

We have no midfield, period 

Good points! Giakoumakis has to be the go to striker. I agree let him start the NL games. Pavlidis can come in off the bench. Personally I prefer Douvikas more than Pavlidis. As for Bakasetas the vast majority of the posters here see how he can’t cut it for the NT.  Bouchalakis is way to slow and we should not start him anymore. Biggest positive from the friendlies was Vlachodimos. He made huge saves especially vs Montenegro. He is having a great season at Benfica who are in the quarterfinals of the CL and he is right up there with the top goalies in Europe at the moment.

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Team I'd pick barring injuries after two trials under Gus. Some players were unconvincing, like that fall from Mavropanos which resulted in Osmajic scoring the match winner.

Galanopoulos injured forever it seems and Manolas not in form. Assuming Manolas, Fortounis and Kourbelis show decent form, they get in. As for Ninis, Fetfatzidis, Sokratis and Siovas, their time in the Ethniki may have passed them bye, when we notice the gaffer not picking them in future.

In a 4 3 3 formation:

                               Vlahodimos (c)

Lyratzis        Manolas       Hatzidiakos        Tsimikas

                                  Kourbelis

        Mantalos                                   Alexandropoulos

 Masouras              Giakoumakis               Pelkas

Subs:

Koulouris  Douvikas  Chatzigiovannis  

Fortounis  Kourfalidis  Siopis

Mavropanos  Goutas  Kyriakopoulos. Saliakas

Paschalakis  Athanasiadis  

I do wonder if Poyet has a playing style and if he will be

able to put his inprint onto the national team and soon. 

 

 

Edited by ausgreek
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4 hours ago, Brklyngrk said:

I would add Gianoulis and Tzolis to the sub list. Limnios over Chatzigiovannis .

Tzolis will be good for us for years. Norwich are a bunch of idiots especially manager Dean Smith he never plays the guy? If Fortounis can stay healthy and we can have him for the full Euro campaign we will see a huge improvement. I’m worried about Pavlidis he lights it up in Holland and lately for the Ethniki he doesn’t produce and he just looks lost. In the two friendlies his movement was non existent & he couldn’t hold up the ball many occasions. If he is given more time in the starting eleven & doesn’t produce with us in the NL then Poyet should drop him. 

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As the midfield is the 'engine room' so to speak, Ethniki needs to have mids that are certainly firing, particularly in the 23-28 years age group. 

Zeca is 33, Fetfatzidis 31, Ninis 31, Mantalos 30, Fortounis 29, Kourbelis 28, Pelkas 28, Siopis 27, Galanopoulos 24, Kourfalidis 19 and Alexandropoulos 18.  There are not too many consistent performers at 18-19 that play for club teams, let alone National teams. It mainly shows a lack of depth that Alexandropoulos and Koufalidis are with the seniors atm. Great potential though definitely. It looks like Kourbelis DM, Galanopoulos (disappointingly very injury prone) CM, and Bakasetas, Pelkas or Fortounis as AM. I chose Alexandropoulos at CM because Gala is injured and he might be the next best option there.

I've changed my mind about having chosen Mantalos above. I feel that era of Ninis, Fetfa, Siovas, and Sokratis is slightly bygone. Mantalos is just over the other side, he is not in great form either. I still hope Manolas can do the business in future. Can be abit older as CB's and GK'rs. 

Bouchalakis and Zeca do not impose themselves in matches, not dangerous enough to sit and play 60-80 matches for the team, like former mids that played over a hundred matches, 40 too many, for Katsouranis and 70 too many for Tziolis.

Poyet needs to look at early-mid twenties players to expose to international matches for the next campaign, for all positions, take a chance even. Alexandropoulos is playing well and perhaps Kourfalidis could get more opportunities now that they both have had some kind of national team exposure as reward for good form so, may as well keep them going for now 'But,'  I'm expecting the eventual drop off in consistency levels, also due to lack of experience at national team level. 

Generally, very young players, like Donis, Tzolis and maybe even Retsos come in, get banged up with injuries and go back out just as quick. Guys like Limnios and Koulouris found being consistent difficult. They may have absorbed the pressure abit, they are mid twenties now.

Rushing most young players hardly ever works long term. 

Edited by ausgreek
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I think that u19 generation back then that consisted of Bakasetas, Bouchalakis, Stafylidis and Kourbelis have to be dropped out of the team. We haven’t gotten anywhere with these guys and you could say they cost us qualification. They are all in there late 20’s now. 

For me it’s simple, play your best and most skilful players. I don’t care where you play. This team have players playing in Greece, Turkey and some in Germany. Still can’t get the job done. To ignore skillful players like Fetfa is absurd. I don’t care if it’s just friendlies your supposed to put away teams like Montenegro and Romania comfortably. Some of our players are injury prone like Retsos, Fortounis and Galanopoulos. These guys  are better than what we have playing right now and when they are fit should automatically be in the side. 

Mantalos and Pelkas are very inconsistent and Bakasetas is just completely useless. We can just get by with Mantalos and Pelkas but I still think we need even better. We should look at possibly bringing Ninis back. If Kyriakos Papadopoulos (who I think is still good enough for this team) can come back and play for Greece while playing in Croatia then Ninis should be given another go. He’s injury prone just like Kyriakos Papadopoulos, so it’s hard to rely on them but when fit put them in they have quality. I can’t think of a better players at the moment. 

I would like this team to consist of players in the age range of 18-27 with a few exceptions. Get rid of that core I mentioned that play currently and play your best players. Media and EPO make it hard for that to happen as there seem to be too much politics and corruption going on especially with caps. Sokratis and Manolas should come back for the better of the team. Mavropanos is great and has a big future but I don’t think Hatzidiakos, Goutas and other young CBs are ready to take Greece to a major tournament. What we actually need is ti have everyone playing and fit but that isn’t always the case. 

My team if everyone is fit: 

Vlachodimos 

Baldock Manolas Mavropanos Tsimikas 

Alexandropoulos Galanopoulos

Fetfatzidis Fortounis Tzolis

Giakoumakis

subs: Fountas, Siopis, Retsos, Masouras, Sokratis, Ninis, Tzolakis, Douvikas, Pavlidis, Limnios, Dioudis, Giannoulis, Kourfalidis, K.Papadopoulos

Apparently Baldock is very close to getting his citizenship.

https://www.sport24.gr/football/mpalntok-gia-ethniki-ellados-eimai-mia-evdomada-makria-apo-tin-dieythetisi-ton-leptomereion.9581444.html?utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=eb&utm_source=Facebook#Echobox=1648839167

Edited by Dean97
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It would be interesting to read who would get the nod for most people, to pick two in each position in the midfield positions for the Ethniki:

DM:  Kourbelis, Alexandropoulos;    CM: Galanopoulos, (Injured so two others); ?? Perhaps Kourfalidis as one?

Need someone wth a deeper knowledge of the Greek player market then me in this case.

CAM:  Fortounis. Fetfa? Other options- Ninis, Mantalos, Bakasetas, Pelkas. I hope they go in a different direction with the CAM position, they might have to look harder for talent. 

Pelkas does a good job as Left Winger.

 

Edited by ausgreek
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That is a big part of the issue, we do not have an abundance of options in central midfield and the players that do play there  are limited in one way or another. Kourbelis, Zeca, Siopis are all pure defensive mids who aren't great with the ball but are pretty solid at the defensive stuff (especially Siopis and Zeca) 

Bouchalakis lack of pace wouldn't necessarily be a problem if he made quick decisions but he doesn't. He wants time and space on the ball something not often afforded in modern football with so much pressing going on. His control is also hit and miss, at least a few times a game the ball will bounce off him and the opposition will win the ball back and launch a counter when half our team is up the pitch. 

Galanopoulos is the one who has a key role to play but injuries have completely taken over his career in the last 2 years. Disappointing for him and a big blow for the Ethniki. 

Alexandropoulos is still young and isn't a nailed on starter for PAO but he is an option, not sure he's the answer at least not at this stage. 

The buck starts and ends with our talent pool, it's limited. We can bicker on here about who should start over who but the reality is apart from a few (mainly defenders) we don't have many midfielders/attackers who are above Super league quality. And those who are have limitations which hinders them when they play at a higher level. 

Edited by paokarag4
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Galanopoulos (Alexandropoulis as cover perhaps), Vasiliadis and Fortounis or;

6. Alexandropoulis/Vasiliadis

8. Mantalos

10. Fortounis

There is attacking enterprise there.

Defence would depend purely how they perform on the day because it is hard to say.

Edited by ausgreek
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I think its really easy to figure out why we aren’t playing well and the coaches have trouble picking the right team. For some reason most of our players are more inform for club, but when they come and play for Greece they forget how to play. Players like Pavlidis, Limnios, Pelkas, Mantalos etc. players like Bakasetas and Bouchalakis are useless and I’ll explain why.

You have to look at the clubs these players play for. Pavlidis has better players around him at club level and that is why he can score goals. Same goes for Giakoumakis. For Greece they have Bakasetas and Bouchalakis trying to provide for them and yet these 2 can’t get the basics right, such as passing and controlling the ball. 

Limnios is another, he has no one capable to play together and therefore is left on his own to make things happen. Fortounis at times for Greece had to do double duty and drop in deep in midfield to collect the ball and create a play, when the number 8 should be doing that instead. 

We have to stop playing 2 defensive midfielders. Especially against teams worse than us and level with us. We haven’t got top quality DMs like other nations. Most of them are destroyers like Siopis we haven’t got a deep playing playmaker that can pull the string in deep positions. We haven’t got an 8 of top quality that can do the job defensively and get forward well. The only one number 8 we have is Alexandropoulos and he’s got it all. We need to give him games. 

If your not going to use him then we’ll have to play a CAM like Pelkas or Mantalos deeper in midfield who can help the team going forward. One defensive midfielder like Siopis can cover defensively.

We also need to play out and out wingers. Pick any 2 from Limnios, Tzolis, Chatzigiovannis and Masouras. Then play Fortounis at CAM and you’ll have a more functional attack and the goals will come. Against better opposition 2 DMs will be needed as we haven’t got top quality midfielders who can do everything that’s needed. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

This would be my starting 11 and squad based on performances this season and players we have in certain positions. 

Giakoumakis (9)

Bakasetas (10)
Tziolis  (11)
Masouras (7)

Siopis (6)
Bouchalakis (8)

Tsimikas (3)
Mavropanos (4)
Nikolaou (5)
Lyratzis (2)

Vlachodimos (1)

Bench: 
Giannoulis, Retsos, Hatzidakos, Saliakas, Alexandropoulos, Tsinngaras, Pelkas, Limnios, Foundas, Vrousai, Pavlidis, Pashalakis

 

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Without Fortounis  Fetfa, Ninis or even Mantalos in the creative AM position, the cavlotic nature of the team cannot come to fruition.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Yeah it's a great opportunity for Poyet to get an extended amount of time by international football standards at least, with the squad. 4 matches in 10 days will shape our hopes of topping the group and locking in a playoff birth for Euro 2024. 

Starting XI as always has some holes, especially in midfield and to a lesser extent in attack. I'll base mine on players who have had regular game time even if they aren't my personal favourites. 

------------------Vlachodimos------

Lyratzis-----Mavropanos---Chatzidiakos-----Tsimikas

-----Bouchalakis*------Siopis-------Mantalos/Bakasetas**

Masouras---------Giakoumakis-----------Limnios

 

* for Bouchalakis because ideally he wouldn't start but we are so limited in central midfield I don't see a way he won't. Alexandropoulos is an option but I don't think coaches have full faith in him just yet, as is evidenced by him not being a nailed on starter for PAO. 

**Mantalos/Bakasetas are the only viable options I see for an attacking mid. I know Fortounis is a favourite on this forum but he unfortunately hasn't come on since returning from long-term injury and is battling niggling injuries. It'll have to be one of those 2 considering Pelkas is also injured and I'm not sure what type of shape he'll be in come NT time. 

Other discussion worthy positions is our attacking 3. I've gone Giakoumakis over Pavlidis but the choice really depends on what your prefer in your striker. Giakoumakis is more a scorer and plays like a traditional big man. He's a constant threat in the box and takes up good scoring positions.

While Pavlidis is much more of a modern striker, will come deep to receive the ball and link up. Much better technically with the ball at his feet. And while he's not a bad scorer and has a good season stats wise, he's not as lethal in scoring positions. 

Tzolis is far more talented than Limnios, but he has hardly played this season so that relegates him to a role  off the bench. Limnios has been a starter in a top 5 team in Holland this season, so despite not being his biggest fan and acknowledging he is limited in an attacking sense he will be one of the wingers. 

@PaokCT  you asked and I delivered, this should keep you busy for half an hour or so😉

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Posted (edited)

                     Vlach

Lyratzis Mavropanos Manolas Tsimikas

               Alexandropoulos 

Limnios        Siopis          Giannoulis 

          Pavlidis Giakoumakis 

I know this sounds crazy, but hear me out guys. Giannoulis NEEDS to play. He started most of the year in the Prem and actually played well once he got used to the speed of things. He is too fast and crafty on the ball to not play him and we tried Tsimikas as a third cb and him as the back and that didn’t work I think keep Kosta and him on that side they will terrorize. Limnios would have to play a little further back than usual (and on his opposite side but again we have nothing else in the mid) but he has played well this year and ANYTHING is better than bouchalakis, bakasetas, or even Mantalos. Maybe u can put Masouras there maybe. Also look, we need to be honest. Giakoumakis and Pavlidis would be generational starters in any other Greek side (besides Mitroglous peak) we need our best players playing period same logic with Giannoulis. Slovenia wouldn’t not play two strikers if two strikers were obviously 2 of their best 4 players. We are not France or Italy. You play ur best players same reason Giannoulis on here. Tziolis first pick for sub and obviously this lineups needs Manolas and siopis to come back from their issues with the team. 

Edited by kolokotronis99tripoli
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Interesting points by everyone. I think this team is still a long way off by making a tournament in my opinion. The reason being is that this team doesn’t play it’s best players and the only way you get in the team is by paying for caps. To be honest I’m tired of hoping that the team and EPO will sort itself out every international break. I have always hoped something would change in a positive sense such as better call ups. But they’ve let us down in that aspect time and time again. 

There are a group of players who constantly start that continuously sabotage the team. It’s not there fault, they are just not good enough. They might try but there lack of talent is very evident. They are just a handful and if we were to replace them with more faster and skilful players then most of our problems will disappear. That’s what I truly believe.

This team doesn’t have world class players apart from maybe Manolas, so that’s why I think playing your best players possible is the answer. Might not solve everything straight away but it’s a great start. Also this team have been having it hard in terms of injuries. I think if Retsos, K.Papadopoulos and Galanopoulos weren’t injury prone our teams performance would look a bit better. This is based on from what I’ve seen in the past with these guys for Greece. Also you can’t ignore players like Fountas who scores nearly every week. Also to say we haven’t got RBs is a lie, what wrong with playing Kotsiras, Kitsiou or Giannis Masouras there. Lyratzis can be another option there. These players play nearly every week so there  are options. 

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