Pappas happy with AEK choice

Lifelong fan Charilaos Pappas described his transfer to AEK Athens FC as 'the best choice' after arriving along with Argentinian defender Federico Azcárate.

Title winner
Fresh from helping Olympiacos clinch the Greek title, the right-sided midfielder explained his reasons for moving to AEK on a free transfer. "I believe that I have made the best choice," he said after signing a three-year deal. "I have come to the club that I have supported since my childhood. I belong to AEK Athens now and will do my best for them. I will learn a lot from the coach [Lorenzo Serra Ferrer] and will improve as a player." The 24-year-old joined Olympiacos from Apollon Kalamaria FC in summer 2005 but struggled to hold down a regular place in the side, scoring three goals in 19 league appearances, 12 of which were as substitute.

'Great honour'
Azcárate, meanwhile, arrives from Spain, where he has been turning out for Club Atlético de Madrid's reserve side following two seasons at Real Murcia CF. The 23-year-old centre-back explained that the lure of European football was a major factor in his decision to agree a four-year contract with the Athenis-based club. "I am delighted to be joining AEK," said the South American. "They are a very important Greek club who are always competing for league and European honours.

Twin goals
"Our main targets for this season are to qualify for the group stage of the UEFA Champions League and to win the Greek league. We have recently signed Rivaldo and Rodolfo Arruabarrena so it is a great honour for me to play alongside them." AEK begin their UEFA Champions League campaign in the second qualifying round after finishing runners-up in the Greek Super League last term.