Football legend reflects on Greece’s Euro 2004 victory 20 years on

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With the Euro 2024 competition set to start this weekend, Greek football legend Stelios Giannakopoulos has reflected on Greece’s Euro 2004 championship win 20 years ago.

Greece’s Euro 2004 victory against Portugal 1-0 stunned the footballing world as they had never won a single match at a major competition.

In an interview with Four Four Two, Stelios said Greece’s national team “didn’t go there to win the tournament, and that’s why we won it.”

“We weren’t big-time players; we weren’t prima donnas. We went to enjoy the tournament. The main thing for us at the time was to win a game in a major tournament for the first time,” he said.

Charisteas heads the ball in the net in the 57th minute to secure a victory for the Greek national team. Photo: UEFA.

After an opening match defeat to Portugal, Greece were able to draw with Spain and then beat Russia to claim a place in the quarter-finals, where France were dispatched 1-0.

“The quarter-final was when we started to think something special was possible,” Stelios explained.

The Greek footballer said Greece’s victory in the final against Portugal stunned fans and gave the team a moment they will never forget.

“For us… it was a golden moment; a priceless moment. You lose your mind in these moments, when dreams come true,” he said.

Greece won’t be able to repeat their heroics 20 years on, as the team failed to qualify for Euro 2024. Greece continues to wait to qualify for a major tournament since the 2014 World Cup.

Source: Four Four Two

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