Greece may have failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, but they have a reputation for being a stubborn opponent on the international stage. At the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, Greece made it to the Round of 16, finishing above the Ivory Coast and Japan, and who can forget their astonishing 2004 European Championship triumph in Portugal.
Those are past glories, however. What’s next? Greece isn’t exactly a hotbed for footballing talent, but a new dawn could be on the horizon for the Greeks. RealSport looks at the best wonderkids from Greece on Football Manager 2018.
What is a wonderkid?
All of these youngsters are aged 23 and under. They all hold potential ability (PA) ratings of at least 140. They may not be highly regarded now, but they can go on to become top class professionals.
For a full list of all our Greek wonderkids, visit the table at the bottom of the page.
Panagiotis Retsos (CA 128 – PA 155)
Position: D (CRL)
Club: Bayer Leverkusen
Best stats: 17 ambition, 16 pace, 16 bravery
Value: £5.7 million
Wage: £34,000 a week
Just 18 and already a Greek international, the hopes of the national team could soon be on Panagiotis Retsos’ shoulders. The centre back moved to Bayer Leverkusen in August 2017, and is already a first team regular, playing 28 times in his first season.
Retsos has skills of 17 ambition, 16 pace and 16 bravery on FM 18, with those stats giving him a 128 current ability (CA) score, which can rise to a potential of 155. You will need over £20 million to sign him however, with his wages currently sat at £34,000 a week.
Konstantinos Mavropanos (CA 110 – PA 120-150)
Position: D (C)
Best stats: 16 pressure, 16 strength, 16 jumping
Wage: £7,000 a week
Few had heard of Kostantinos Mavropanos when he arrived at Arsenal in January, with the former PAS Giannina man only playing 20 games of professional football in his career. The 19-year-old added a further three after his move to the Gunners, and although a loan move probably beckons, he does not look out of his depth at the Emirates.
Mavropanos’ 110 CA rating can increase to a potential between 120 and 150 on Football Manager, with his best stats 16 pressure, 16 strength and 16 jumping. To sign him, you may need close to £10 million with wages of £7,000 a week.
Thanasis Androutsos (CA 110 – PA 120-150)
Position: AM (CL), M (C), ST
Best stats: 17 temperament, 16 pressure, 14 off the ball
Wage: £2,000 a week
Thanasis Androutsos made his debut for the Greece national team after some great form in the past two seasons for Olympiacos. The attacking midfielder has featured close to 50 times for the club; no mean feat given he is just 20 years’ old.
To sign Androutsos, you are looking at a fee close to £7 million, with his wages currently at £2,000 a week. Stats of 17 temperament, 16 pressure and 14 off the ball provide him with a 110 CA, rising to a potential between 120 and 150.
Dimitris Limnios (CA 105 – PA 120-150)
Position: AM (RLC), M (RL)
Best stats: 15 pace, 15 acceleration, 15 ambition
Wage: £3,000 a week
Dimitris Limnios moved from Atromitos to PAOK at the start of the 2017-18 season, and the decision has been vindicated by the 19-year-old receiving his first cap for his country. The winger made 26 appearances in his debut campaign for PAOK, winning the Greek Cup with the club.
Limnios has stats of 15 pace, 15 acceleration and 15 ambition on the game, which can be yours for close to £5 million and wages of £3,000 a week. His current ability rating is 105 which can rise to a potential between 120 and 150.
Lazaros Labrou (CA 100 – PA 120-150)
Position: AM (LRC), M (RL)
Club: Panionios (on loan from PAOK)
Best stats: 16 adaptability, 15 pressure, 14 consistency
Wage: £4,000 a week
Lazaros Labrou (or Lamprou) is yet to play for parent club PAOK, with the winger going out on loan to Panionios following his move from Iraklis in January 2017. During his loan spell, the 19-year-old has played 45 games for Athens-based Panionios, scoring eight goals and notching five assists.
On FM 18, you are looking at a price around £4 million for Labrou, with his wages at £4,000 a week. His 100 CA can improve to a PA between 120 and 150, with his best stats 16 adaptability, 15 pressure and 14 consistency.
Alexandros Katranis (CA 90 – PA 120-150)
Position: D (L), WB (L)
Best stats: 15 determination, 14 bravery, 14 pressure
Wage: £2,500 a week
Alexandros Katranis moved from Atromitos to Saint Etienne in August 2017 but spent the entire campaign with the French side’s 2nd team. Despite that, he’s progressed through the Greece youth ranks to U21 level, but it may take a loan spell to get the game time he needs to kick on.
Left back Katranis has stats of 15 determination, 14 bravery and 14 pressure on the game, which give him a CA of only 90, but this can improve to a potential between 120 and 150. The 19-year-old will cost you just over £3 million with wages of only £2,500 a week.
Antonis Stergiakis (CA 87 – PA 120-150)
Club: Slavia Sofia
Best stats: 17 jumping, 14 aerial ability, 13 reflexes
Wage: £100 a week
A young goalkeeper to take a punt on is Slavia Sofia stopper Antonis Stergiakis. The 18-year-old has just made his breakthrough in the Bulgarian top-flight, making 35 appearances for the club already, which could mean a bright future lies ahead. Alongside Lazaros Labrou, Stergiakis was nominated for the Golden Boy Award (best European under 21) in 2017.
Stergiakis has a harsh CA of just 87 on FM, but this can improve to a potential between 120 and 150. You may only need £2 million to sign him, with his wages currently only £100 a week. His best stats include 17 jumping, 14 aerial ability and 13 reflexes.
Dimitrios Emmanouilidis (CA 75 – PA 120-150)
Position: AM (RL), M (RL)
Best stats: 13 decisions, 12 first touch, 11 flair
Wage: £300 a week
Only 16, Dimitrios Emmanouilidis can be the star of the future for your side. The winger made his debut for Panathinaikos in November 2017, and he also racked up 10 games for Greece U19s, scoring four goals.
Emmanouilidis’ best stats include 13 decisions, 12 first touch and 11 flair, giving him a CA of 75. This can rise to a potential between 120 and 150, meaning his fee of just £1 million an absolute steal. Expect his current wages of just £300 needing to be increased.
Anastasios Donis (CA 128 – PA 143)
Position: ST, M (L), AM (LC)
Best stats: 15 dribbling, 15 flair, 15 aggression
Value: £4 million
Wage: £13,000 a week
After being born in Blackburn, England and then joining Juventus at youth level, Anastasios Donis turned to Germany in 2017, joining Stuttgart. After loan spells at Lugano and Nice prior to joining the Bundesliga club, striker Donis now has the platform to make the most of his potential.
The 20-year-old Donis has a 128 CA on the game, rising to a potential of 143. Stats of 15 dribbling, 15 flair and 15 aggression will cost around £10 million, with his wages currently £13,000 a week.
Kostas Stafylidis (CA 130 – PA 141)
Position: D (L), WB (L)
Club: Stoke City (on loan from Augsburg)
Best stats: 17 bravery, 16 long shots, 16 pressure
Value: £3.8 million
Wage: £13,000 a week
Already holding 24 Greece caps, Kostas Stafylidis is an experienced defender despite his age of 23. The left back has travelled plenty in his career already, starting at PAOK before heading to Bayer Leverkusen, Fulham on loan, then Augsburg before joining Stoke on loan in January 2018. Where his future lies is uncertain, but you could easily pick him up at the end of the season in FM 18.
To grab Stafylidis you are looking at a price around £9 million, with wages of £13,000 a week. 17 bravery, 16 long shots and 16 pressure give him a CA of 130 which can improve to 141.
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