As was expected, the illegal procedure followed by the Executive Committee of the Hellenic Football Federation (HFF – EPO) so that Dimitris Melissanidis could impose Iakovos Filippousis as Executive Secretary would not pass without being challenged.

Although we are already accustomed to mere communications grandstanding by some, there are forces that want legality to prevail and will not back down.

Hence, Olympiacos FC and Takis Agrafiotis through their lawyer, Vasilis Dimakopoulos, and Athens University Professor Filippos Spyropoulos, have filed suit against the illegal decision and are asking the Administrative Court to annul the decision and the resulting appointment of Filippousis as Executive Secretary.

What is the argument of Olympiacos and Takis Agrafiotis? They maintain that based on the existing EPO Charter (Article 38) the only person who can nominate or remove the Executive Secretary is the President of EPO.

No one else can replace the president in exercising this authority.

That is reasonable as the Executive Secretary is the President’s closest associate – his man.

In this case, the opposite happened.

Thodoris Zagorakis in his capacity as EPO President said at a meeting of the Executive Committee that – in violation of the Charter – he would not nominate anyone for the post of Executive Secretary. He proceeded to walk out of the meeting.

That way Jack, as he is known, Filippousis was nominated by the well-known Panagiotis Dimitriou, who was promoted to the post of Alternate President after providing his “services” in the context of the debacle of last year’s Finals Cup.

Moreover, it is important to note that Jack Filippousis does not have the requisite professional qualifications and experience (as stipulated in Article 56 of EPO’s Charter) to serve as Executive Secretary of EPO.

It is said – although Jack’s CV is nowhere, including EPO, to be found – that he has a degree in German Literature and essentially has worked only as a journalist.

Thus, although Jack has been nurtured with the works of Goethe and Nietzsche, he lacks even the slightest experience in issues of personnel organisation and management.

After all, what need is there for all that in “clean hands” EPO? It isn’t as if they intend to implement the comprehensive study or to clean up and upgrade Greek football.

Only [former athletics minister] Stavros Kontonis and Dimitris Melissanidis were able to discern Jack’s important qualifications!


Naturally, although Zagorakis wanted to believe that Jack will essentially do nothing and that he would be able to limit his actions, he is essentially deluded!

He can ask Alexis Dedes to find out how he peeled Jack like an onion and ousted him from EPO. Jack Filippousis has such people for lunch.

At least Thodoris realised that Filippousis’ appointment poses a problem.

Hence, in order for EPO to avoid an even worse predicament as a result of Filippousis’s null and void decisions, two days ago he authorised Panagiotis Dimitriou to sign the cards of footballers that allow them to compete and ceded to him other duties of the Executive Secretary so that actions would not be deemed null and void when Filippousis’s appointment is annulled – a certain eventuality.

The question that arises now is whether Zagorakis – who according to the Charter is the sole representative of EPO in court – goes as far as to order EPO to be present at the Administrative Court meeting against Olympiacos and Agrafiotis so as to maintain that Filippousis’ appointment is legal.

Imagine seeing that!

Of course, given all that transpired in the new meeting of the Executive Committee anything is possible. What is certain is that the servile “gardeners” will be in great demand at Goudi Park!

This is all the more true when someone of Zagorakis’s stature remains silent when he hears all the illegal and null actions that Filippousis is proposing as regards filling positions in all of EPO’s committees, and when stays mum when Agrafiotis asks him how well he knows these nominees and whether he has met them for even five minutes in order to form an opinion before nominating them for seats on EPO’s permanent committees!

Is one to expect Zagorakis, or Dimitriou with tacit approval or absence of Zagorakis, to interfere in refereeing and instruct UEFA’s chosen one – Mark Clattenburg – to allow Greek referees or Greek members of KED, the Central Refereeing Committee, to be deployed so that the “Tiger” Melissanidis – before AEK FC enters its new Agia Sophia Stadium – can defeat Giannina FC, Atromitos FC, and Volos FC?

Who would have expected that an emblematic personality like Thodoris Zagorakis – who in 57 consecutive games wore the armband of the Greece National Football Team (a record that surpassed even legends like Billy Wright and Bobby Charlton) – would, despite his stellar record as a leader, morph into a “planter” that needs the permission of people like Dimitriou, Vasilis Daniil (who is under investigation), or coffee shop owner Kyriakos Thomaidis in order to hire his associates? Gardeners or not!

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