Greek prosecutor to probe armed PAOK owner who invaded pitch during match

The probe will also investigate why police allegedly ignored instructions to arrest Ivan Savvidis on the spot, issued by a prosecutor on duty at Sunday's game against AEK Athens.

By: AP | Published: March 13, 2018 7:15:25 pm
ivan savvidis PAOK owner Ivan Savvidis walks on the pitch escorted by his bodyguards during a Greek League match. (Source: AP)

A Thessaloniki prosecutor ordered a judicial investigation Tuesday after the gun-toting owner of PAOK Thessaloniki marched onto the field following a disputed goal in a Greek league match.

The incident prompted condemnation from FIFA and an indefinite suspension of league play.

The probe will also investigate why police allegedly ignored instructions to arrest Ivan Savvidis on the spot, issued by a prosecutor on duty at Sunday’s game against AEK Athens.

Savvidis entered the field accompanied by bodyguards, apparently carrying a pistol in a waist holster. He made no visible move to use the weapon, for which he has a license.

Fernando Varela had just scored in the 90th minute, putting PAOK ahead 1-0. The referee signaled a goal but then seemed to disallow it for offside. The match was abandoned.

Savvidis apologized Tuesday for what he called an “emotional reaction” to the referee’s decision and “the general negative condition in Greek soccer.”

In a statement on the club’s website, Savvidis said his only intention had been “to protect tens of thousands of PAOK fans from provocations and clashes (with) victims.”

For all the latest Sports News, download Indian Express App

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement