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Theodoros Zagorakis

Published: Monday 1 September 2003, 17.59CET

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Published: Monday 1 September 2003, 17.59CET

Theodoros Zagorakis


Clubs: Kavala FC, PAOK FC, Leicester City FC, AEK Athens FC, Bologna FC, PAOK FC

UEFA honours
UEFA European Championship:
winner 2004
All-Star Squad

• A combative, industrious defensive midfielder with a powerful right-foot shot, Zagorakis achieved footballing immortality by captaining Greece to a fairy-tale triumph at UEFA EURO 2004 in Portugal.

• Started his career with local club Kavala before joining top-flight PAOK in 1992 and became a Greek international two years later; he would go on to start each of Greece's next 28 internationals.

• Made 155 league appearances for PAOK before moving abroad to join English Premier League side Leicester in January 1998; became a cult figure during a successful period for the club under manager Martin O'Neill.

• Returned to Greece in summer 2000, joining AEK, with whom he was to win the Greek Cup at the end of his second season, defeating Olympiacos FC 2-1 in the Athens final.

• Made a sensational major international tournament debut for Greece at UEFA EURO 2004, playing every minute of the team's unlikely triumph; was voted Player of the Tournament by UEFA and finished fifth in the 2004 Ballon d'Or poll.

• Joined Italian outfit Bologna but a year later he was back in Greece following the club's relegation to Serie B, rejoining PAOK on a two-year contract.

• Became the first Greek footballer to achieve a century of international caps, reaching the milestone on 17 November 2004 in a FIFA World Cup qualifier at home to Kazakhstan.

• His first international goal did not arrive until the occasion of his 101st appearance − in a World Cup qualifying win over Denmark (2-1) in February 2005; he would add two more before winning his 120th and final cap for Greece in a special farewell appearance against Spain in Salonika in August 2007 – three months after he had retired to become president of PAOK.

Last updated: 09/12/13 3.01CET

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