Statements made by PAOK Thessaloniki football club owner Ivan Savvidis about the match between his team and Turlish club Besiktas for the qualifying round of the Champions League ha caused a stir in Turkey, with the Turkish media saying the club could appeal to UEFA for the matter.
On Thursday, August 13, the vice-president of PAOK, Makis Gagkatsis went to the training center of PAOK and conveyed to the players the message of Ivan Savvidis, who due to the pandemic is quarantined in Rostov, Russia.
In his message, which was published by Forza newspaper, Savvidis, among other things, told PAOK players that: “It is a game of great importance for the team’s goals, which becomes even more significant due to the recent events (referring to the crisis with Turkey). Politics is one thing, football is another, but you should know that on that day PAOK will represent all of Greece “.
Savvidis’s message became known in Turkey and picked up sports sites and media in Turkey which called the Greek owner a provocateur.
“Ivan Savvidis is a provocateur” was the headline on Tumspor, while the Independent went one step further.
“UEFA has changed the venue of a match in the past if there are political tensions and it took place in a neutral stadium. It is very likely that UEFA will do the same since Besiktas is expected to request it after the statements of Ivan Savvidis “!
It remains to be seen whether the developments are really based on the Turkish publications and how much Besiktas will pursue the issue.