Donis ready to dig deep at APOEL

"We all need to work hard," said Giorgos Donis after taking over as coach of Cypriot title holders APOEL FC until the end of the season following Paulo Sérgio's dismissal.

Giorgos Donis is determined to succeed at APOEL
Giorgos Donis is determined to succeed at APOEL ©Getty Images

New APOEL FC coach Giorgos Donis says he and his new side will have to put in "hard work" after he replaced Paulo Sérgio at the Cypriot club on Friday.

The former Panathinaikos FC, Blackburn Rovers FC and AEK Athens FC winger has signed on with the Cypriot title holders until the end of season, with his mission to get the Nicosia outfit back on track after a run of just three wins in 11 games under his predecessor. Paulo Sérgio was shown the door in the wake of APOEL's 3-0 UEFA Europa League home defeat by Eintracht Frankfurt on 3 October, which left them on one point in Group F after two matchdays.

"I believe APOEL were the best option for me," said the 43-year-old, who was born in Germany. "They are a side that are good now but also have a good history and prospects for the future. Nothing they achieved in the past was a fluke. With a lot of hard work and organisation, this team have achieved a lot. I need to try and learn about them and the players in the little time I have. We all need to work hard here because APOEL are a big club and are always under pressure to succeed."

Donis's first test will be to take his new charges to joint Cypriot First Division leaders Ermis Aradippou FC on 19 October, with APOEL two points back in fifth. They resume their UEFA Europa League campaign at FC Girondins de Bordeaux five days later. Donis has previously coached Larissa FC, AEK Athens, Atromitos FC and PAOK FC.