Former European champions Greece confirmed their squad for this summer’s instalment on Tuesday and it was disappointment for midfielders Alexandros Tziolis and Panagiotis Kone, who were cut from the provisional 25-man party by Brazilian coach Fernando Santos.
Kone dug his own grave when he was sent off for violent conduct in their 1-1 friendly draw with Slovenia on Saturday, while Tziolis was considered the weakest of Greece’s plethora of defensive-minded midfielders in the preliminary squad.
That leaves the final 23 and the Greek public are still in a state of shock about the omission of experienced goalkeeper Orestis Karnezis and fellow Panathinaikos team-mates Nikos Spiropoulos and right-back Loukas Vintra.
Named in the squad is exciting talent Yiannis Fetfatzidis, a pacey winger plying his trade at home with Olympiakos, and centre-back Kyriakos Papadopoulos, who impressed for Schalke in the Bundesliga this season.
There was also a place for another of Greece’s younger players in Kostas Fortounis, a 19-year-old midfielder who made 28 appearances for Kaiserslautern last term.
Celtic striker Giorgos Samaras is probably the most recognisable name in the squad, but it is Olympiakos front man Kostas Mitroglou who could be a secret weapon for the shock Euro 2004 winners.
He spent last season on loan at Atromitos, scoring 16 goals in the campaign, and could be one to watch at the tournament if he gets a start ahead of the other Greek strikers named – Nikos Liberopoulos, Samaras, Dimitris Salpigidis and likely first choice Fanis Gekas.
Greece are expected to be tough to beat at Euro 2012 and being in the ‘weaker’ Group A gives them a real chance of progression, so their attacking players need to be on form throughout the early stages.
Santos’ men now play Armenia in a friendly on Thursday before heading off to their base in Poland.
Greece squad for Euro 2012:
Goalkeepers: Kostas Chalkias (PAOK), Michalis Sifakis (Aris), Alexandros Tzorvas (Palermo).
Defenders: Vassilis Torosidis (Olympiakos), Sokratis Papastathopoulos (Werder Bremen), Avraam Papadopoulos (Olympiakos), Jose Holebas (Olympiakos), Stelios Malezas (PAOK), Giorgos Tzavelas (Monaco), Yiannis Maniatis (Olympiakos), Kyriakos Papadopoulos (Schalke).
Midfielders: Giorgos Karagounis (Panathinaikos), Kostas Katsouranis (Panathinaikos), Giorgos Fotakis (PAOK), Kostas Fortounis (Kaiserslautern), Yiannis Fetfatzidis (Olympiakos), Sotiris Ninis (Panathinaikos), Grigoris Makos (AEK Athens).
Forwards: Giorgos Samaras (Celtic), Dimitris Salpigidis (PAOK), Kostas Mitroglou (Atromitos), Nikos Lymberopoulos (AEK Athens), Fanis Gekas (Samsunspor).
New customers can register here to claim a free £25 bet or click here to see all our Euro 2012 odds.
Follow us on Twitter @bwinbetting