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Sunday, March 28, 2004 

New look for Greek football



The Hellenic Football Federation (EPO) has announced new sponsors and unveiled a new logo. The EPO is aiming to adjust its image to today's market conditions, bringing out football's marketing dimension at the same time.

Sponsorship deals
Vassilios Gagatsis, the president of the EPO, today welcomed representatives of OPAP S.A., Vodafone, adidas, Grecotel, Mercedes and Hellas On Line, who have all accepted the opportunity to affiliate their names with the Greek national team between 2004 and 2006.

'European model'
"When we began this project, our starting point was to organise the senior national team in a way modelled after major European national teams," Gagatsis said. "For the first time since it was founded in 1926, the EPO has at its disposal a fully-equipped athletics centre and a team of qualified coaches in charge of Greek national sides."

Firm financial framework
Gagatsis went on to speak about the EPO's aim of becoming financially self-reliant, with the examples of UEFA and FIFA used as development platforms. "We have decided on an administrational reconstruction based on the new framework of modern technology and new activities," he said. "We made the first steps in the marketing field two years ago. We are trying to increase our financial resources so that the sport can become independent and self-powered.

'Investment in training'
"From our €30m budget last year, only 27 per cent came from state subsidy," the EPO president continued. "Around the country, 47 training centres are already being constructed in corresponding regional football unions. Recently, we held eight coaching courses modelled on UEFA and for the first time we trained coaches for junior age groups. Our target is to make the national team more accessible to the public, through its own boutique, its own products, even its own season-ticket offers."

Logo explained
According to marketing executive director Ioannis Farfarellis, the EPO's new logo consists of a variety of symbols. "The circle labelled 'Hellenic Football Federation' symbolises the endeavour that drives the team effort and affirms the idea that football unites," he said. "The ball in the circle symbolises the drive, the constant movement, the show, whilst the geographic image of Greece is a mark of inspiration, energy, pride and perspective."

Illustrious names
The presentation ceremony in Athens was held in the presence of Otto Rehhagel, coach of Greece, while internationals Antonios Nikopolidis, Vassilios Tsiartas and Georgios Georgiadis were also present, as were members of the EPO's executive board.

Source: uefa.com, epo.gr

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