Rival Analysis: Ionikos profile
After their previous negative result against Lamia (2-0) in the Round of 16 of the Cup, Ionikos turns their gaze back to the championship, welcoming PAOK for Matchday 12 of the 2021-22 Super League InterwettenThe Nikaia club returned to the big time over the summer and paokfc.gr gives you the lowdown on the story of their season to date.
Last season will forever be etched in the memories of the Blue and Whites, as their team was promoted back to the elite of Greek football after a 14-year absence. This season’s goal is to preserve their Super League Interwetten status with a few hopes for something slightly better guided by a successful past.
After the first 11 games of the championship, Ionikos lie in 12th place in the standings with 10 points.
Vote of confidence in Spanos
After Dimitris Spanos’ excellent contribution in guiding the team into the top flight from the Betsson Super League 2, the club’s administration have entrusted the 52-year-old coach with the technical leadership again this season. The experienced coach also represented Ionikos as a player.
His coaching career began in 2005 at Anagennisi Arta, and since then he has collaborated with various Greek teams, mainly in the lower divisions, such as Aiantas Salaminas, Rhodes, Panachaiki, Panagialio, Aeolikos Mytilene, Union Ermionida, Apollon Smyrnis, Lamia, Aris, Doxa Drama, and Levadiakos. His biggest success to date was the 2017-18 season, when he celebrated guiding Aris back to the Super League Interwetten.
As expected, the transition from one category to another brought many changes to the team’s squad. Several players left and were replaced by experienced foreign players with knowledge and experience of Greek football.
There were 17 new arrivals in Nikaia, with the most expensive being that of Aias Aosman. Other new faces are that of Didier Delgado, Reinaldo Lenis and Luan, while the well-known Alaixys Romao, Jose Canas, and Dmytro Chyhrynskyi, as well as the Albanian international midfielder Vullnet Basha stand out.
The Brazilian forward Rogerio Thuram has developed into a very important player, and he already has two goals and two assists. Equally significant transfers are those of Giorgos Valerianos, Konstantinidis, Dalcio, Alberto Bueno and Nikos Vafeas.
For Sunday’s (05.12) clash with PAOK, Spanos will be deprived of the services of Thuram, who followed an individual training program during the week as he recovers from nijury, and Delgado, who is a long-term injury victim. The rest of the players trained normally and are at the disposal of the Greek coach.