AEK Athens FC's talismanic forward, Themistoklis Nikolaidis, has launched a court action against the team's owner, Chrisostomos 'Makis' Psomiadis, and has asked the Greek Football League (EPAE) to release him from his contract with the club.
Greek international Nikolaidis reportedly pressed charges against Psomiadis at the police headquarters in Athens today, following up a formal complaint he had made on Tuesday night accusing Psomiadis of invasion of privacy and threatening behaviour.
Nikolaidis alleged that Psomiadis burst into his house on Tuesday night with his bodyguards and made threatening noises about what might happen if the 29-year-old striker continued to ignore his calls. AEK subsequently issued a statement acknowledging that a club official had visited the player but only as a standard measure for vetting players' extracurricular activities.
"The footballer did not answer telephone calls made at around 11pm by a club representative during a curfew period on 14 January," the statement said. "As a result, he was visited at his home by a club representative to check that he was complying with the curfew in accordance with club rules. Mr Nikolaidis responded in an aggressive manner to the club representative who explained that as a professional he was obliged to accept club curfews under the terms of his contract."
Greek football's problem
However, Nikolaidis filed a petition with the EPAE today seeking to have his contract with AEK, the club he has always supported, terminated. "The problem is not just that Psomiadis came to my house and threatened me," he said. "The problem is that it is OK for Psomiadis, his bodyguards and their methods to be representative of Greek football.
Invasion of privacy
"Mr Psomiadis is destroying my career and the careers of my team-mates by destroying the team and the dreams of our fans. He invades our private lives. As a professional footballer and a Greek citizen, I will not tolerate any more contact with Mr Psomiadis. I will not return to AEK as long as he is at the club."
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