Sokratis with Greece in 2013
|Full name||Sokratis Papastathopoulos|
|Date of birth||9 June 1988|
|Place of birth||Kalamata, Greece|
|Height||1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)|
|Playing position||Centre back / Right back|
|2006-2007||→ Niki Volos (loan)||11||(0)|
|2011–2012||→ Werder Bremen (loan)||30||(1)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 10 May 2014.
† Appearances (Goals).
Sokratis Papastathopoulos (Greek: Σωκράτης Παπασταθόπουλος, pronounced [soˈkratis papastaˈθopulos]; born 9 June 1988) is a Greek footballer who plays as a centre back for the German Bundesliga club Borussia Dortmund and the Greek national team. Since the surname Papastathopoulos cannot fit on his club shirt, his first name Sokratis is usually displayed instead; however, a common nickname for him is Papa.
- 1 Club career
- 2 Style of play
- 3 International career
- 4 Statistics
- 5 Records
- 6 Honours
- 7 References
- 8 External links
Papastathopoulos joined AEK Athens from Apollon Petalidiou after being scouted by Toni Savevski. On 26 October 2005, he made his debut for AEK Athens in a Greek Cup match against PAS Giannina scoring in the 7th minute of the game leading AEK Athens to a 3–0 win.
Niki Volou loan
In January 2006, he was loaned to Greek Second Division club Niki Volou for six months in order to gain first team football and gather valuable experience. He made a total of 15 appearances for Niki Volou.
AEK Athens return
During the 2006-07 Superleague Greece, Papastathopoulos managed to make 14 appearances whilst competing against the likes of Bruno Cirillo, Traianos Dellas and Vangelis Moras. In AEK Athens' 2006–07 UEFA Champions League campaign, Papastathopoulos managed to play in three out of the six group games. In these three games AEK Athens managed one win (the famous 1–0 victory over Milan, where he man-marked Filippo Inzaghi), one draw (the 2–2 away draw with Anderlecht) and one loss (the 3–1 away defeat to Lille). During the 2007–08 Superleague Greece, he was a mainstay in AEK's defence, keeping out competition from Geraldo Alves. He also played through the 2007-08 UEFA Champions League campaigna and in a Super-League match becoming the side's youngest ever captain, aged 19, in a game against great local rivals Panathinaikos in 2008.
He made his debut for Genoa on 27 September 2008 against Fiorentina, followed by a start against Ravenna Calcio in the Coppa Italia a few days later. His first goal for Genoa came on 5 October 2008 at home against Napoli. Genoa won the game 3–2, but Papastathopoulos was sent off in the 89th minute During the 2009–10 season, he managed to play in most games and became somewhat of a fan favorite.
On 20 July 2010, it was confirmed on Milan's website that Papastathopoulos had joined the team, after Genoa and Milan reached an agreement to transfer Papastathopoulos to the club for €14 million, with the following payment schedule: Gianmarco Zigoni (half of registration rights valued €3.75M), Nnamdi Oduamadi (half rights valued €3.5M) and Rodney Strasser (half rights €2.25M) in co-ownership deal, plus €4.5 million cash. Papastathopoulos is the first arrival since former Cagliari Calcio boss Massimiliano Allegri's appointment as Milan coach.
On 24 May 2011, Adriano Galliani and Enrico Preziosi formed a verbal agreement to solve the players ownerships (subject to player agreements) of Kevin-Prince Boateng, Alberto Paloschi, Marco Amelia and Giacomo Beretta. The deal entailed that Milan bought back Gianmarco Zigoni, Rodney Strasser and Nnamdi Oduamadi (all under original price), while Genoa bought back Papastathopoulos for €13 million, which effectively made the de facto loan cost for Milan €1 million.
The Greek international leaves Genoa on a one-year loan with Bremen having the option to purchase the defender outright. An agreement was long in the making, but financial trouble at the German club stalled negotiations before a deal was finally struck. "He's a young player and has already gained some experience at Genoa and in the Greek national team," Bremen sporting director Klaus Allofs said. "When we heard that he was not being used at AC Milan, we immediately expressed interest. With his pace, his strength, and tackling, he will certainly help us." It was a complex deal that involved eight players, Genoa bought back Sokratis in May, only to pass him on to Bremen. "After initial discussions with Klaus Allofs and Thomas Schaaf, it was immediately clear to me that I would accept the offer from Werder. Now I will integrate into the team and help as soon as possible," the 23-year-old said. Capable of playing both in the centre and on the right of the back four, Papastathopoulos will provide much-needed cover for Bremen's defence. Currently, defenders Naldo, Per Mertesacker, Sebastian Prodl, Sebastian Boenisch, and Mikael Silvestre are sidelined with injuries.
Following good performances, it was decided on 16 April 2012 that Papastathopoulos would join Werder Bremen on a permanent basis, for €5 million. The 2012/13 season was not good for the club as tried to avoid relegation. Dealing with pressure is a vital part of any relegation battle and, judging by events took place on March 2013, Werder Bremen are not coping well after Sokratis had a petulant training ground brawl with his teammate ex-Inter star Marko Arnautovic. It was a sole incident in the career of Sokratis so far.
On 24 May 2013, the eve of the Champions League final featuring Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund, Sokratis completed a transfer to Borussia Dortmund until 2018. Borussia Dortmund signed Sokratis for a reported €9.5 million  on a 5-year deal worth €2 million per season. Papastathopoulos spoke about his transfer saying "Money did not play a role in my decision to join Dortmund. My own future was all that mattered and I am convinced that I made the right decision." With Felipe Santana leaving for Schalke, BVB were in need of a third centerback behind Neven Subotic and Mats Hummels. Strangely, BVB have decided to pay a large sum for the Greek defender. "I gained a lot from my two years with Werder, but now I feel ready to make the next step." said Papastathopoulos and everyone in the club feels certain that he is ready for the Champions League. Borussia Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc has revealed that the club "are delighted" to secure the signing of Sokratis Papastathopoulos from Werder Bremen. "We are delighted that Sokratis has decided to join Borussia Dortmund. He is a flexible player capable to play in a variety of positions in defence who we believe has tremendous potential," Zorc said in a club statement.
On 10 July 2013, Sokratis made his debut for Dortmund in a pre-season friendly away to FC Basel at St. Jakob-Park, along with his new teammates Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Henrikh Mkhitaryan. On 27 July 2013, he won his first title with the club by entering as a substitute in a 4-2 win over Bayern Munich for the DFL-Supercup. On 1 November 2013, Papastathopoulos scored his first goal for Dortmund in a 6-1 win against Stuttgart in the Bundesliga.
The very good year he had Sokratis Pastathopoulos with Borussia Dortmund, was rewarded with his selection in the top XI of 2013/14 Bundesliga. The choice of course was not random, but in a vote organized by the governing body of the league through the official website. Fans from various countries of the world have chosen therefore the ideal team for this year's German league and amongst them is the 25-year old Greek defender. "The definition of defense falls on him. The Greek stopper took advantage of the opportunities given to him by the absence of Neven Subotić and Mats Hummels. Stable, with leadership characteristics and tendency to win the ball without making easily a mistake" was the description for the Greek defender.
Style of play
Sokratis Papastathopoulos shows a real physical defender with great consistency. While the Greek centre back may not head the ball too well he has very few weakness’ on the whole. Add to this some great pace, general defensive attributes and hunger to work the pitch and you have a photo of him. Papastathopoulos possesses every virtue which has brought the Greeks success in the national team; courage, superb reading of the game and calm under pressure. Sokratis, a former track and field athlete in his childhood, joined the elite list in Germany with the players that reached a top speed of over 35 km/h, alongside Artjoms Rudņevs, Rosenthal, Diouf, Johannes van den Bergh and Kirchhoff as Bundeslinga.de reported for season 2012/13. When Sokratis asked what he thinks about these facts, he stated: "What I know is that I’m not slow…".
UEFA U-19 Championship 2007
At the 2007 UEFA European Under-19 Football Championship in Austria, Papastathopoulos was captain of the Greece national team but controversially missed out on the final against Spain due to a suspension. Papastathopoulos picked up his second yellow card of the tournament against Germany in the semi-final, following up on his first yellow card against Austria in the group stage. The Hellenic Football Federation tried to appeal the yellow card to UEFA but were rejected. The match referee of the Germany game, Kevin Blom, apologized to Papastathopoulos for giving him the yellow, as it was later shown on video that it was not a booking. Papastathopoulos was a key figure of Greece's defensive line and was sorely missed the final.
Papastathopoulos was called up for the Greek senior team on 1 February 2008 and made his debut on 5 February 2008 in the 1–0 friendly victory against the Czech Republic. The Greece squad for UEFA Euro 2008 was announced by Otto Rehhagel on 27 May 2008, and Papastathopoulos was the unfortunate player to be cut from the provisional squad of 24 to the final 23-man selection.
He was recalled for a friendly against Slovakia on 10 August 2008. From then, he has been a regular squad member for Greece. He featured in four 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying matches and helped his country to qualify for the final tournament. He was selected in Greece's 23-man squad for the finals in South Africa and played all 90 minutes in Greece's last match in the tournament against Argentina, man marking Lionel Messi in the entirety of the game.
Papastathopoulos became the first player to be sent off at UEFA Euro 2012 during the opening game of the tournament against co-hosts Poland, after receiving two yellow cards, following what pundits decried as two poor decisions by the referee Carlos Velasco Carballo.
In June 2014, Papastathopoulos was named in Greece's squad for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. He started in each of the team's group matches, helping them to a clean sheet against Japan. In the round of 16, Papastathopoulos scored his first international goal, equalising in second half stoppage time against Costa Rica. However, the Greeks were eventually defeated 5–3 in a penalty shootout by the Central American champions. With his goal in regulation time, he holds the longest surname for a World Cup goalscorer.
- As of 17 May 2014.
- As of 29 June 2014.
- Scores and results list. Greece's goal tally first.
|1.||29 June 2014||Itaipava Arena Pernambuco, São Lourenço da Mata, Brazil||Costa Rica||1–1||1–1||2014 FIFA World Cup|
- On 14 May 2008 during a derby match against Panathinaikos, he became the youngest player to have ever captained AEK Athens at the age of 19.
- Sokratis Papastathopoulos surname is the longest (single) second name of any goalscorer in World Cup history.
- Borussia Dortmund
- UEFA European U-19 Championship: UEFA Team of the Tournament
- Named in UEFA U-19 European Championships 2007 "Names to Note"; the best 11 players of the tournament.
- Greek Young Footballer of the year: 2008
- UEFA U-19 European Championships (Silver Medal): 2007
- Francesco Somma (3 August 2010). "Sokratis o Papastathopoulos? Questo è il dilemma". milannews.it (in Italian). Retrieved 12 August 2010.
- "Ανακοίνωση" [Communication]. AEK FC (in Greek). ca. 1 August 2008. Archived from the original on 5 August 2008. Retrieved 11 June 2011.
- "IL GENOA DA' LEZIONE DI GRECO". Genoa CFC (in Italian). 1 August 2010. Retrieved 11 June 2011.
- Papastathopoulos opens Genoa account
- "Genoa 3–2 Napoli". soccernet.espn.go.com. 5 October 5, 2008. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
- "Welcome Sokratis!". acmilan.com (Associazione Calcio Milan). 20 July 2010. Retrieved 20 July 2010.[dead link]
- "Milan pick up Genoa starlet Papastathopoulos". UEFA.com. 20 July 2010. Retrieved 22 July 2010.
- "AC Milan Group 2010 Annual Report". AC Milan (in Italian). ca. April 2011. Retrieved 11 June 2011.
- "Milan pick up Genoa starlet Papastathopoulos". 2010-07-20.
- Genoa CFC SpA Report and Accounts on 31 December 2011 (in Italian). CCIAA Archive. ca April 2012.
- "Relazione e Bilancio al 31 Dicembre 2011" (in Italian). Ac milan. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
- "Boateng e del Milan Riscatto da 7 milioni". La Gazzetta dello Sport (in Italian). 25 May 2011. Retrieved 11 June 2011.
- "Sokratis introduced". Werder Bremen Official Website. 21 July 2011. Retrieved 16 January 2013.
- "Official: Sokratis Papastathopoulos joins Werder Bremen on loan from Genoa". Goal.com. 21 July 2011. Retrieved 16 January 2013.
- "Bremen swoop for Papastathopoulos". ESPN. 21 July 2011. Retrieved 16 January 2013.
- "Sokratis Papastathopoulos joins Werder Bremen on loan from Genoa". goal.com. 21 July 2011.
- "Sokratis Papastathopoulos to Werder". werder.de. 21 July 2011.
- "Papastathopoulos makes Bremen move permanent". FIFA.com. 16 April 2012. Retrieved 16 January 2013.
- "Papastathopoulos completes Bremen switch". Fox News. 16 April 2012. Retrieved 16 January 2013.
- Genoa CFC SpA Report and Accounts on 31 December 2012 (in Italian). CCIAA Archive.
- "Werder Bremen stars show strain of relegation battle with petulant training ground brawl". metro.co.uk. 29 March 2013.
- "BVB sign "Sokratis"". Borussia Dortmund. 28 May 2013. Retrieved 28 July 2013.
- "Υπέγραψε στην Ντόρτμουντ ο Σωκράτης!". sport-fm.gr. 23 May 2013.
- Coerts, Stefan (5 June 2013). "Sokratis: I did not join Dortmund for the money". Goal.com. Retrieved 28 July 2013.
- "Borussia Dortmund sign Sokratis Papastathopoulos from Werder Bremen". sbnation.com. 28 May 2013.
- "Lewandowski shines as Stuttgart hit for six".
- "Στην καλύτερη 11άδα του Γερμανικού Πρωταθλήματος ο Σωκράτης Παπασταθόπουλος". protothema.gr. 28 April 2014.
- "Team of the season". bundesliga.com. 23 April 2014.
- "Player profile – Sokratis Papastathopoulos". footballmanagerstory.com.
- "Sokratis Papastathopoulos". telegraph.co.uk.
- "Sokratis Papastathopoulos speed records". ask4sports.eu.
- "Greece Squad call up". UEFA.com.[dead link]
- "Greece's Papastathopoulos drops out". UEFA.com. 28 May 2008. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
- Glendenning, Barry (8 June 2012). "Euro 2012: Poland 1–1 Greece – as it happened". The Guardian. Retrieved 9 June 2012.
- "Greece World Cup 2014 squad". The Telegraph. 2 June 2014. Retrieved 30 June 2014.
- "Japan 0-0 Greece". BBC. 20 June 2014. Retrieved 30 June 2014.
- "Costa Rica 1-1 Greece". BBC. 29 June 2014. Retrieved 30 June 2014.
- "Παπασταθόπουλος Σωκράτης". aek.com (in Greek). Athlitiki Enosis Konstantinoupoleos. Retrieved 12 August 2010.
- Sokratis Papastathopoulos at National-Football-Teams.com
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Sokratis Papastathopoulos.|
- Sokratis Papastathopoulos – FIFA competition record
- Sokratis Papastathopoulos – UEFA competition record
- Bundesliga profile
- ESPN FC profile