Manager: Fernando Santos
Best finish: Group stages (1994, 2010)
World Cup record: P 9, W 2, D 1, L 6
It’s 10 years since Greece angered the footballing gods by winning Euro 2004 in admirably agricultural fashion, beating hosts Portugal twice. It was an impressive feat from an unfashionable side but the their World Cup pedigree is tragic by comparison. In 1994 they left the USA with no wins, no points and no goals. In 2010 they beat Nigeria but lost to Argentina and hosts South Korea.
Fernando Santos is 4-3-3 man, who allows Giorgios Samaras drop deep on the left to get possession and lollop forward the way he does. On the other flank, Dimitris Salpingidis offers more of a goal threat in support of Kostas Mitroglou. Behind them, Kostas Katsouranis (34) and Giorgios Karagounis are still options 10 years after their triumph in Portugal. Full-backs Vasilis Torosidis (Roma) and José Holebas (Olympiakos) will be threats going forward.
All Star - Konstantinos Mitroglou
What convinced Mitroglou to leave Champions League side Olympiakos for Fulham is anyone’s guess but, after injury, a manager change, three starts, no goals and then relegation, he must be dying to get out of there. With Greece, his fortunes have been vastly different, thanks largely to five of his side’s 16 goals in the qualifiers.
County Colours - Wexford
The sunny south easts, summer hangouts for noisy northern neighbours.
Pundit’s Corner - Giovanni Trapattoni: “I like, they have the good mentalitee, no? For the lidle detiiiles!”
The draw has been kinder than in the past, and with a miserly defence, just four conceded in the group stage, Greece can frustrate. The fear must be goals. Bosnia beat them to Brazil, also finishing on 25 points but with 30 goals rather than a mere 12. Can’t see them getting out of Group C, where Colombia, Ivory Coast and Japan look better equipped, but, sure, they’ve shocked us before.
Goalkeepers: 1 Orestis Karnezis (Granada, Esp), 12 Panagiotis Glykos (PAOK), 13 Stefanos Kapino (Panathinaikos).
Defenders: 3 Giorgios Tzavellas (PAOK), 4 Kostas Manolas (Olympiacos), 5 Vangelis Moras (Verona, Ita), 11 Loukas Vyntra (Levante, Esp), 15 Vasilis Torosidis (Roma, Ita), 19 Sokratis Papastathopoulos (Borussia Dortmund, Ger), 20 Jose Holebas (Olympiacos).
Midfielders: 2 Giannis Maniatis (Olympiacos), 6 Alexandros Tziolis (Kayserispor, Tur), 8 Panagiotis Kone (Bologna, Ita), 10 Giorgos Karagounis (Fulham, Eng), 16 Lazaros Christodoulopoulos (Bologna, Ita), 21 Kostas Katsouranis (PAOK), 22 Andreas Samaris (Olympiacos), 23 Panagiotis Tachtsidis (Torino, Ita).
Forwards: 7 Giorgios Samaras (Celtic, Sco), 9 Kostas Mitroglou (Fulham, Eng), 14 Dimitris Salpingidis (PAOK), 17 Theofanis Gekas (Konyaspor, Tur), 18 Ioannis Fetfatzidis (Genoa, Ita),
GREECE (v Colombia): 1 Orestis Karnezis; 15 Vasilis Torosidis, 4 Kostas Manolas, 19 Sokratis Papastathopoulos (yc), 20 Jose Holebas; 2 Giannis Maniatis, 8 Panagiotis Kone (10 Giorgos Karagounis, 78 mins); 14 Dimitris Salpingidis (yc) (18 Ioannis Fetfatzidis, 57 mins), 21 Kostas Katsouranis, 7 Giorgios Samaras; 17 Theofanis Gekas (9 Kostas Mitroglou, 64 mins).
GREECE (v Japan): 1 Orestis Karnezis; 15 Vasilis Torosidis (yc), 4 Kostas Manolas, 19 Sokratis Papastathopoulos, 20 Jose Holebas; 2 Giannis Maniatis, 21 Kostas Katsouranis (rc), 8 Panagiotis Kone (14 Dimitris Salpingidis, 81 mins); 18 Ioannis Fetfatzidis (10 Giorgos Karagounis, 41 mins), 9 Kostas Mitroglou (17 Theofanis Gekas, 35 mins), 7 Giorgios Samaras (yc).
Kostas Katsouranis suspended for Ivory Coast game after red card.
GREECE (v Ivory Coast): 1 Orestis Karnezis (12 Panagiotis Glykos, 24 mins); 15 Vasilis Torosidis, 4 Kostas Manolas, 19 Sokratis Papastathopoulos, 20 Jose Holebas; 2 Giannis Maniatis, 10 Giorgos Karagounis (17 Theofanis Gekas, 78 mins); 8 Panagiotis Kone (22 Andreas Samaris, 12 mins), 14 Dimitris Salpingidis 16 Lazaros Christodoulopoulos; 7 Giorgios Samaras.
Those on one yellow card are: Dimitris Salpingidis, Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Vasilis Torosidis, Giorgios Samaras.
GREECE (v Costa Rica): 1-Orestis Karnezis; 15-Vassilis Torosidis, 19-Sokratis Papasthathopoulos, 4-Kostas Manolas, 20-Jose Holebas; 10-Giorgos Karagounis, 2-Yannis Maniatis (Karagounis 78'), 16-Lazaros Christodoulopoulos, 22-Andreas Samaris (Mitroglou 58'); 14-Dimitris Salpingidis (Gekas 68'), 7-Giorgos Samaras.
Those on one yellow card are: Dimitris Salpingidis, Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Vasilis Torosidis, Giorgios Samaras, Kostas Manolas, Andreas Samaris