Best Greek Soccer Players of All Time

Vince Massara

When we think of the greatest soccer players in history, names like Pelé, Maradona, and Messi often come to mind. But what about the best Greek soccer players of all time? Greece may not be known for its storied soccer tradition, but it has produced some exceptional athletes who have left a lasting impact on the sport.

One player who stands out is Vasilis Hatzipanagis. Known for his skillful playmaking abilities, Hatzipanagis was a true artist on the field. His ability to control the game and create scoring opportunities for his teammates was unmatched. He was a joy to watch and a nightmare for opposing defenders.

Another Greek player who deserves recognition is Angelos Charisteas. While he may not have had the same level of technical skill as Hatzipanagis, Charisteas was a clutch performer. He rose to the occasion on the biggest stage, scoring the winning goal in the 2004 UEFA European Championship final. His goal sealed Greece's historic victory and cemented his place in Greek soccer history.

And let's not forget about Theodoros Zagorakis. As the captain of the Greek national team during their Euro 2004 triumph, Zagorakis was the heart and soul of the team. His leadership and determination were instrumental in Greece's success. He may not have been the flashiest player, but his contributions were invaluable.

These are just a few examples of the best Greek soccer players of all time. There are many others who have left their mark on the sport, and their stories deserve to be told. Greek soccer may not have the same prestige as some other countries, but its players have proven that they can compete with the best.

Vasilis Hatzipanagis

Vasilis Hatzipanagis, a retired Greek footballer, played for Iraklis in the Greek Alpha Ethniki and Pakhtakor in the Soviet Supreme League. He's widely considered one of the greatest Greek soccer players of all time. Hatzipanagis left a lasting impact on Greek football with his exceptional skills and influential performances on the field.

Hatzipanagis represented both Greece and the USSR Olympic side during his career, showcasing his talent on the international stage. Known as the Greek Maradona, he'd a significant influence on Greek football. He received 445 votes, solidifying his place as a significant figure in the history of Greek football.

Hatzipanagis' contributions to the sport went beyond the playing field. He served as an inspiration for younger generations of Greek footballers, including notable players like Giorgos Karagounis. His skill and creativity as a midfielder set him apart from others, making him a standout player in Greek soccer history.

Although Hatzipanagis played during a time when Greek football wasn't as prominent globally, his influence can't be underestimated. His performances in domestic and international competitions, such as the Euro and UEFA, showcased his exceptional talent and contributed to the rise of Greek soccer.

Angelos Charisteas

Angelos Charisteas is a well-known Greek soccer player who gained international fame for his decisive goal in the UEFA Euro 2004 final. Here are some interesting facts about him:

  • Charisteas, born in 1980, is considered one of Greece's most famous soccer players. He's had a significant impact on Greek football, with a Highly Protected Individual (HPI) rating of 49.49.
  • He played a crucial role in the historic victory of the Greek national team in Euro 2004. His winning goal in the final against Portugal not only secured Greece's first major international trophy but also left a lasting legacy in Greek football history.
  • Charisteas' contribution to the success of the Greek national team earned him recognition on the international stage. His biography has been translated into multiple languages, highlighting his impact on Greek soccer.
  • Throughout his career, Charisteas has represented various clubs both in Greece and abroad. He's played for Feyenoord in the Netherlands, Werder Bremen in Germany, and Al Nassr in Saudi Arabia, among others.
  • In addition to his success at the UEFA Euro, Charisteas also participated in the FIFA World Cup with the Greek national team in 2010, further solidifying his status as one of Greece's top football players.
  • His achievements on the field and his ability to score crucial goals have earned him a place among the best Greek soccer players of all time. He's regarded alongside other icons such as Greek goalkeepers Antonios Nikopolidis and Konstantinos Chalkias, as well as midfielder Giorgos Karagounis.
  • Charisteas' talent and success also caught the attention of Premier League clubs. In 2006, his former club Feyenoord sold him to English side Ipswich Town for a reported fee of £2.8 million.

Theodoros Zagorakis

Theodoros Zagorakis, the influential captain of the Greek national team, played a crucial role in leading his team to victory in Euro 2004. His performances from the center of the pitch were key in Greece's combative displays that led them to the title. Zagorakis' leadership as captain inspired the team, and his contributions helped elevate Greek football to new heights.

Zagorakis was honored as the Player of the Tournament by UEFA and was included in the Team of the Tournament for his outstanding performances. His ability to control the game from midfield and make important interceptions and tackles was instrumental in Greece's success.

Beyond his accomplishments on the international stage, Zagorakis also had a successful club career. He represented several Greek clubs, including PAOK and AEK Athens, and won the Greek Cup with each of them. Zagorakis was a central figure in the Greek league, consistently showcasing his skills and leadership.

While Zagorakis wasn't known for his goal-scoring prowess, his impact on the field was undeniable. His vision, passing ability, and defensive skills made him an essential player for both his club and national team. Alongside his teammate Giorgos Karagounis, Zagorakis formed a formidable midfield partnership that played a pivotal role in Greece's historic triumph at Euro 2004.

Georgios Karagounis

Georgios Karagounis, a highly influential figure in Greek soccer, played a crucial role alongside Theodoros Zagorakis in leading the national team to victory in Euro 2004. Here are some key facts about Karagounis that highlight his impact on Greek football:

  • Karagounis holds the record for the most appearances for the Greece national football team, with an impressive 139 caps. This speaks volumes about his talent and dedication, as he consistently performed at a high level throughout his career.
  • As a midfielder, Karagounis showcased his skills and leadership during Greece's historic triumph at UEFA Euro 2004. His performances were instrumental in the team's success and helped raise the overall level of Greek football.
  • Throughout his career, Karagounis played for several notable clubs, including Panathinaikos, Apollon Smyrni, Internazionale, Benfica, and Fulham. His contributions to these teams left a lasting legacy in Greek football.
  • Karagounis achieved significant milestones at the club level as well, winning Greek Cups and Superleague Greece titles with clubs like AEK Athens and Panathinaikos. These accomplishments further solidify his status as one of the best Greek players of all time.

Georgios Karagounis's impact on Greek soccer can't be overstated. His achievements both domestically and internationally make him a true legend of the game.

Stelios Giannakopoulos

Stelios Giannakopoulos, a former Greek professional soccer player, had a successful career in the English Premier League, notably playing for Bolton Wanderers. Known for his technical ability and goal-scoring prowess, Giannakopoulos made a significant impact both at the club level and on the national team. As a midfielder, he showcased his skills and contributed to his team's success.

Giannakopoulos was an important part of the Greek national team, particularly during their memorable Euro 2004 campaign. His technical ability and vision on the field were instrumental in the team's triumph. He displayed a deep understanding of the game and was praised for his ability to score crucial goals.

At the club level, Giannakopoulos achieved success in the Greek Championships before making the move to the English Premier League. During his time at Bolton Wanderers, he became a fan favorite and a key player for the team. His performances were characterized by his agility, ball control, and ability to create goal-scoring opportunities.

Since retiring from professional soccer, Giannakopoulos has remained involved in the sport, taking on various roles. His contributions to Greek football are undeniable, and he'll always be remembered as one of the greatest Greek players in the history of the game.

Dimitris Saravakos

Dimitris Saravakos, a prominent Greek soccer player, made a significant impact on the domestic football scene. Here are some important details about his career:

  • Saravakos played as a professional footballer for major Greek clubs like Panathinaikos and AEK Athens. He gained recognition for his skill and ability to score goals, making him a prominent figure in Greek football during the 1980s and 1990s.
  • He was also an integral part of the Greek national team, known for his technical prowess and goal-scoring talent. Saravakos represented his country in various international competitions, including the UEFA Euro.
  • One of his notable achievements was being a member of the Greek squad that won the UEFA Euro 2004. This victory shocked the football world, and Saravakos had the opportunity to play alongside other notable players like Giorgos Karagounis.
  • Saravakos' contributions to Greek football solidified his place as one of the top Greek soccer players of his generation. His legacy continues to inspire aspiring soccer players in Greece.

Antonis Nikopolidis

Antonis Nikopolidis, a highly respected goalkeeper from Greece, has left an indelible mark on Greek football with his outstanding performances and unwavering commitment to the sport.

Throughout his career, Nikopolidis has been recognized as one of the greatest Greek players in history. He played a crucial role in the success of the Greek national team, representing his country at Euro 2004 and contributing to their historic victory.

Nikopolidis' talent and skill as a goalkeeper were evident in every match he played, earning him numerous awards and accolades. He holds the record for the most appearances as a goalkeeper in Greece's history, a testament to his longevity and consistency.

Alongside other notable Greek players like Giorgos Karagounis and Theodoros Zagorakis, Nikopolidis helped elevate Greek football to new heights. His contributions to the sport weren't limited to the national team, as he also achieved success at the club level, winning multiple league titles.

Nikopolidis' impact on Greek football will always be remembered, and his legacy as one of the greatest Greek goalkeepers of all time remains unquestioned.

Kostas Katsouranis

Kostas Katsouranis, a well-known figure in Greek football, has had a significant impact on the sport and made important contributions to the national team. Here are some key facts about his career:

  • Katsouranis is a Greek professional footballer who played as a midfielder for clubs like AEK Athens, Benfica, and Panathinaikos.
  • He played a crucial role in Greece's historic victory at the UEFA Euro 2004 tournament, where they unexpectedly became champions.
  • Katsouranis was admired for his versatility and leadership qualities, making him a respected figure both on and off the field.
  • After retiring from professional football, he entered the world of politics and was elected as a member of the European Parliament.
  • Katsouranis has also pursued a career in coaching and currently works as a football manager.

Kostas Katsouranis is often mentioned alongside other Greek football legends such as Giorgos Karagounis, Antonis Nikopolidis, Angelos Charisteas, Mimis Domazos, Fanis Gekas, and Theodoros Zagorakis. His contributions to the national team and success in international tournaments have solidified his place among the best Greek soccer players of all time.

Katsouranis' versatility, leadership, and determination have inspired future generations of players in Greece. He'll always be remembered for his significant role in Greece's football history.

Christos Patsatzoglou

Christos Patsatzoglou, a well-known Greek football player, had a significant impact on the sport with his impressive skills and contributions on the field. He played as a midfielder for various clubs throughout his career and also represented the Greek national team. Patsatzoglou's talent and dedication earned him a special place in the hearts of Greek soccer fans.

One of the highlights of Patsatzoglou's career was his participation in the UEFA Euro 2004, where Greece surprised everyone by becoming champions. Patsatzoglou played a crucial role in the team's success, showcasing his technical abilities and tactical understanding of the game. His performances were instrumental in Greece's historic victory.

After retiring from professional football, Patsatzoglou entered the world of politics and became a Greek MEP. However, his impact on Greek soccer can't be overlooked. Patsatzoglou's legacy is defined by his skillful play, leadership qualities, and unwavering dedication to the sport. He represents the talent and determination of Greek soccer players and will always be remembered as one of the greats in Greek football history.

Giorgos Samaras

Giorgos Samaras, a highly accomplished Greek soccer player, has made significant contributions to the sport both at the national and international levels. Known for his versatility as a forward, his aerial ability, and his knack for scoring crucial goals, Samaras has played for several clubs including Celtic and Manchester City. He's also been a key member of the Greece national team, playing a significant role in their successes in various international competitions. Samaras' leadership, work ethic, and enduring impact on Greek soccer have cemented his status as one of the greatest players in the country's history.

Samaras has represented Greece in major tournaments such as the UEFA Euro, showcasing his skills on the international stage. His performances have placed him among the best Greek footballers of all time, earning him recognition and respect from fans and peers alike. Samaras has also competed in the UEFA Champions League, facing off against some of the world's top players. Not only has he played alongside legendary players like Giorgos Karagounis, but Samaras has also had the honor of captaining the Greece national team, leading his country with pride and determination.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Many Greek Players Have Played in the Premier League?

Over 32 Greek players have competed in the Premier League, making a significant impact with their talent and skill. Well-known players such as Karagounis, Papastathopoulos, and Stafylidis have impressed fans with their abilities, leaving a lasting mark on the league. These Greek players have brought a unique style of play to the Premier League, adding diversity and excitement to the competition. Their contributions have helped raise the level of the game and have garnered admiration from both fans and fellow players.

Is Greece Good in Football?

Greece has had success in international football tournaments, including their memorable victory in Euro 2004. Greek clubs have also made a strong impact in European competitions. In recent years, Greek football has been on the rise, and it has played a significant role in promoting diversity and inclusion. This progress is worth noting as it demonstrates the positive impact that football can have on society.


The greatest Greek soccer players in history have made significant contributions to the sport. Vasilis Hatzipanagis, Angelos Charisteas, Theodoros Zagorakis, Georgios Karagounis, Stelios Giannakopoulos, Antonis Nikopolidis, Kostas Katsouranis, Christos Patsatzoglou, and Giorgos Samaras have all left a lasting impact on Greek football.

Their achievements, both domestically and internationally, have elevated Greek soccer and firmly established their place in the game's history. One notable moment was Zagorakis leading Greece to victory in Euro 2004. Their success has solidified their status as the best Greek soccer players of all time.

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