|This article's lead section may not adequately summarize key points of its contents. (January 2017)|
|Full name||Alexandros Tziolis|
|Date of birth||13 February 1985|
|Place of birth||Katerini, Greece|
|Height||1.89 m (6 ft 2 1⁄2 in)|
|Playing position||Defensive midfielder|
|Heart of Midlothian|
|2009||→ Werder Bremen (loan)||15||(1)|
|2010–2011||→ Racing Santander (loan)||10||(0)|
|2012–2013||→ APOEL (loan)||30||(0)|
|2014||→ Kayserispor (loan)||15||(0)|
|2017–||Heart of Midlothian||4||(1)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 18 February 2017.
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 13 November 2016
- 1 Club career
- 2 International career
- 3 Playing style
- 4 Career statistics
- 5 Honours
- 6 References
- 7 External links
Early club career
Tziolis began his playing career as a teenager in a local team called Apollon Litochorou. He played there for about seven years and in 1995, a Panionios scouter spotted his talent and brought him to Athens. He was an integral part of Panionios team for three seasons, playing 61 matches and scoring three goals. As a result, Panathinaikos offered Panionios €650.000 and signed him.
Tziolis has been established as a first team player for Panathinaikos after replacing the big-name but disappointing Igor Biscan during the 2006–07 season. On April 2007, an early goal from Tziolis was enough to break Skoda Xanthi's unbeaten home run - in Super League play - this season and secure Panathinaikos a place in this season's Greek Cup final against Larissa. Panathinaikos win by 1–0 went into the second leg having been confined to a scoreless draw in the semifinal's first leg. The lack of titles for Panathinaikos put Tziolis in the center of criticism along with his teammate Loukas Vyntra. For both players, though, this criticism could be considered unfair since they were neither big-money signings of the club nor did they receive the biggest contracts.
By the end of 2007–08 season Tziolis was close to his exit from Panathinaikos but the new manager Henk Ten Cate chose to keep him. After being mostly neglected at the beginning of 2008–09 season, Tziolis was included in the team in November and was MVP in the epic 3–0 win in Germany against Werder Bremen for the UEFA Champions' League, where he also scored the third goal for Panathinaikos. According to some Greek sport newspapers, he avoided to celebrate the victory with the fans, embittered by the recent criticism he received. Since Ten Cate shows his preference to 4–3–2–1 tactics, he is expected to gain more opportunities in the first XI at the expense of Marcelo Mattos. He has since established himself as a valuable member of the squad, linking well with teammates Gilberto Silva and Simao Mate Junior. Eventually over the years, he made 113 appearances (six goals, eight assists) with the club in all competitions.
Werder Bremen (loan)
On 7 January 2009, Panathinaikos agreed terms with Werder Bremen and Tziolis will go on loan at the German club for at least six-months, for a fee of €300.000. After those months, Werder Bremen has the right to fully obtain Tziolis for a fee of €1.6m. Speaking to Werder.TV, Tziolis again expressed his delight at securing a move to Germany’s premier football competition. “This transfer happened very quickly,” Tziolis said. “I am glad that I can now approach this task. Werder Bremen is a great club and have a great team. Bundesliga is very strong – there are many good players and many good teams. Here, I can develop further as a player. This change is a dream come true for me.”
Tziolis played a regular role in Bremen's midfield and helped the club to make the UEFA Cup final against Shaktar Donetsk, on 20 May 2009. In the final, he came on as a substitute for Peter Niemeyer in the 103rd minute. After having nearly scored the equalizing goal when Bremen were a goal behind, the team lost the final of the last UEFA Cup edition to Shaktar with a final score of 2–1. Tziolis also featured in Bremen's 1–0 victory over Bayer Leverkusen in the German Cup final the same season, where Tziolis won his first ever trophy in professional football.
On 29 January 2010 Panathinaikos agreed terms with the ex-Panathinaikos coach Alberto Malesani, Italian Serie A club AC Siena obtaining Tziolis for a fee of €1.4m. He made his debut in the Serie A on 7 February 2010 against Sampdoria. Tziolis was a regular for Siena, but the team wasn't able to avoid relegation to the Serie B.
Racing Santander (loan)
In August 2010, it was confirmed that the Spanish La Liga side Racing Santander had agreed to take Tziolis on a one-year loan deal. Greek international Alexandros Tziolis faces up to six months out after suffering a leg break in his nation's 1–0 win over Latvia. The defensive midfielder, who is on loan at Racing Santander from Italian Serie B side Siena, was carried from the field in agony and was assessed immediately by medical staff, who took the 25-year-old to hospital for surgery. Spanish club Racing have confirmed that the operation was a success, but that the period of recuperation will be between four and six months. Tziolis, is now likely to terminate his loan deal with the Primera Division side and return to Italy in order to continue his rehabilitation.
Then after a successful league campaign for the second half of the season they signed him from Siena for an undisclosed fee. The Greek international joins Racing Santander as a free agent after gaining a release from his Siena contract. The 26-year-old was a personal target for Racing Santander coach Héctor Cúper, who has concerns about the strength of his backline.
In January 2012, Racing Santander also announced the exit of Tziolis, saying they and AS Monaco "have reached an agreement for the incorporation" of the player into the French club. Racing Santander has signed the Spanish U21 international Marcos Gullon from Villarreal who only made two appearances for Villarreal’s senior side for an 18-month contract with the club. On the other side, the Greek international Alexandros Tziolis, has only made 22 appearances since joining the club in 2010, and as a consequence he will leave the club, joining French side Monaco on a loan deal with the option to a permanent move. Monaco were relegated to the French Ligue 2 last summer and then slipped to the foot of the table before Russian businessman Dmitry Rybolovlev bought the club in December and committed funds to strengthen the team. Tziolis spent 18 months at Racing Santander, the first 12 months on loan from AC Siena before the clubs struck a permanent deal. He signs a three-and-a-half-year contract with the club.
On 31 August 2012, Tziolis joined Cypriot side APOEL on a season-long loan deal from AS Monaco. “APOEL FC announces the agreement with international footballer Alexander Tziolis on a one-year contract,” read the official APOEL press release. Tziolis joined AS Monaco last January as the Greek international arrived on transfer from Racing Santander. He expected to make a name for himself in Ligue 2 along with Greece teammate Giorgos Tzavellas, but he failed to make an impact and earn playing time. 
During his loan spell at APOEL, he became a league champion for the first time in his career, appearing in all but two of the league matches and helping his team to win the Cypriot First Division.
On 25 June 2013, Tziolis signed a three-year contract with Greek Superleague side PAOK. On 17 August he made his league debut in a 3-0 home win against Xanthi. On 22 December 2013, he scored his first goal with the club in a home victory against Levadiakos. Besides the fact that was among the key players of PAOK in the first round of the 2013–14 season, the acquisition of so many great players along with his desire to be in the final selection for the 2014 World Cup made him to sign with the Super Lig team Kayserispor. At the beginning of 2014–15 season, Tziolis returned to PAOK, playing in a mediocre, for him and the club, period 34 games in all competitions scoring only one goal in the Greek Cup. On 27 November 2015, in the match for the UEFA Europa League against Gabala FK, Tziolis reached 400 appearances with all his clubs for all competitions.
Alexandros Tziois contract with PAOK expires at the end of 2015–16 season, but will be automatically renewed if he plays at the 70% of team's matches. However, the club want to keep the international midfielder for many years and Tziolis also had a first meeting with technical director Frank Arnesen, to speak about the terms of a contract extension. On 19 August 2016, PAOK officially announced that the international midfielder is not in club's plans for the 2016–17 season.
On 31 January 2014, he signed a six-month with Kayserispor on loan from PAOK. After those months, Kayserispor has the right to fully obtain Tziolis for a fee of €1.5m, Nine days after he made his debut in the Süper Lig in an away loss against Elazigspor.
Heart of Midlothian
On 30 January 2017, Tziollis joined Scottish Premiership club, Heart of Midlothian on a six-month deal running to the end of the 2016–17 season, and made his Hearts debut in the 4–1 win against Rangers On 4 February 2017, Tziolis scored his first goal as Ian Cathro's side beat 10-man Motherwell 3–0 at Fir Park.
After representing his country 12 times for the under-21 side, Tziolis made his international debut for Greece on 21 January 2006 in a friendly match against South Korea. He was a part of the defending European champions at UEFA Euro 2008, where he played once, when he came on as a substitute in a 1–2 loss to Spain in the group-stage. He also made four appearances in qualifying, including as a substitute in the play-off win away to Ukraine.
He was also part of the squad that participated to the 2010 FIFA World Cup. He played every minute of the tournament for his country, including their first ever World Cup win over Nigeria on 17 June 2010.
But, after the participation in two major events, Greece coach Fernando Santos dropped Alexandros Tziolis from his final 23-player squad for the UEFA Euro 2012. Tziolis had a poor season and could not even get a regular spot in the Monaco team, in Ligue 2, while his performance in the last friendlies did little to change Santos's mind. Two years later, Tziolis exceptional season year with both PAOK and Kayserispor was his passport not only to be called by Santos to the 30 man provisional World Cup squad, but also to the final 23-man squad for 2014 FIFA World Cup.
|1.||8 June 2011||New York City, USA||Ecuador||1–1||Draw||Friendly|
Tziolis is a tall defensive midfielder, good in air, with powerful long shots. He plays a "silent" role in the game, and he tends to occupy the role of a deep-lying playmaker more than a defensive stopper.
- As of 4 February 2017
|Club||Season||League||League Cup||National Cup||Europe||Other||Total|
|Heart of Midlothian||2016–17||4||1||0||0||2||0||0||0||0||0||6||1|
- Werder Bremen
- "2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil: List of Players" (PDF). FIFA. 11 June 2014. p. 18. Retrieved 27 September 2014.
- Tziolis jolts to Bremen on loan deal, greece.theoffside.com, 7 January 2009. Retrieved on 2009-01-09.
- Werder sign Tziolis on six-month loan, sportingreece.com, 7 January 2009. Retrieved on 2009-01-09.
- OFFICIAL: Werder Bremen Sign Tziolis
- Tziolis to Siena, kathimerini.gr, 29 January 2010.
- Με μεταγραφή στη Σιένα ο Τζιόλης, sentragoal.gr, 29 January 2010.
- "Racing Santander Midfielder Alexandros Tziolis Faces Six Months Out After Suffering Broken Leg". goal.com. 11 October 2010.
- "Racing Santander sign Siena defender Alexandros Tziolis". nz.sports.yahoo.com. 31 August 2011.
- "Racing sign Gullon and Tziolis leaves for Monaco". www.insidespanishfootball.com. 31 January 2012.
- "Tziolis out for Racing". foxsportsasia.com. 1 February 2012.
- Υπέγραψε ο Τζιόλης (in Greek). APOEL FC. 31 August 2012. Retrieved 31 August 2012.
- "Monaco : Tziolis à l'APOEL Nicosie" (in Greek). www.francebleu.fr. 31 August 2012. Retrieved 31 August 2012.
- "Alexandros Tziolis joins APOEL on loan from AS Monaco". footballhellas.com. 1 September 2012. Retrieved 31 August 2012.
- http://www.sport24.gr/football/omades/Paok/anakoinwse-tziolh-gia-3-xronia-o-paok.2307640.html, sport24.gr, 25 June 2013. Ανακοίνωσε Τζιόλη για 3 χρόνια ο ΠΑΟΚ.
- http://www.sport24.gr/football/EllinesExoterikou/tziolhs_eprepe_na_paizw.2653219.html, sport24.gr, 20 February 2014. Retrieved on 2014-02-20.
- 400αρίζει ο Τζιόλης, το... γιορτάζει ο ΠΑΟΚ (in Greek). www.sport-fm.gr. 26 November 2015.
- PAOK and Tziolis in contract extension talks (in Greek). www.sdna.gr. 7 December 2015.
- Φευγάτος ο Τζιόλης από τον ΠΑΟΚ! (in Greek). www.gazzetta.gr. 19 August 2016.
- Λύση συμβολαίου Αλέξανδρου Τζιόλη (in Greek). www.paokfc.gr. 28 January 2017.
- PAOK terminate Alexandros Tziolis' contract. www.sdna.gr. 28 January 2017.
- "Τούρκος" ο Τζιόλης! (in Greek). APOEL FC. 2 February 2014. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
- "Hearts sign Greek duo Alexandros Tziolis and Anastasios Avlonitis". BBC Sport. BBC. 30 January 2017. Retrieved 30 January 2017.
- "Alexis Tziolis". bbc.co.uk.
- "Greece drop Tziolis, Kone from Euro 2012 squad". samachar.com. 29 May 2012.
- "Greece World Cup 2014 squad". telegraph.co.uk. 19 May 2014.