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The first match up: Soulis Vs Charis Markopoulos


PAOK is completing its presence at the Patras Cup this evening with the game against Koroivos Amaliadas, a game that is defined by the first clash between Soulis Markopoulos and his son, and head coach of Koroivos, Charis Markopoulos.


Working together for PAOK for five years, today they meet for the first time as rival coaches, although this is a friendly game. Only hours before their match up, that can also decide the winner of the Patras Cup, Soulis and Charis Markpoulos spoke to and answered five questions common to both…


_Is there anxiety, curiosity or any special feeling in regard to this game?

Soulis Markopoulos: «No anxiety. The game is special mostly to the media, but the game is just that, a game, and we are professionals. We have only met a few times in the past as opponents, when Charis was young and still playing basketball, I think when I was coaching Makedonikos and he was playing for Iraklis".

Charis Markopoulos: «There is no anxiety, it's still the pre-season, so we are just trying to see where our teams stand. The only strange thing for me is that I'll be watching PAOK for the first time in five years from the opposite bench".


-After five years of very close and daily cooperation, how is it to work with different teams?

 Soulis Markopoulos: «It was kind of funny in the beginning, but I'm coming back to where I was before working with Charis. Of course there will always be communication in regard to basketball."

Charis Markopoulos: «For sure, it's a totally different situation we are experiencing, but we are both interested in the other one's team, it's not possible not to talk about basketball when we communicate. Each one of us is trying to do their job the best way possible in the most professional manner".


-Although from a distance, have you been watching the building of the other team's roster?

 Soulis Markopoulos: «You always watch what other teams are doing. All the more when the other team is coached by Charis…»

Charis Markopoulos: «I was aware of how the team was being built, I think it's only natural, although I had no say in the decision making. But I'm very interested in the team and what is being created for the next season".


-What do you think about Koroivos and PAOK of the new season and what do you wish for coach Markopoulos? Soulis Markopoulos: «It's still early, but from the first two games I saw, I think that something good is being done with Koroivos, they are playing good basketball, although they still miss key players. It's a first time experience for Charis and Koroivos, that participates a new and tough league. What I wish for him… Just like any father, I want the best for my son. It's not a one day job, but rather a life engagement. There are going to be good and bad moments. He should have patience and perspective to cope with tough times, find his strong points  and weaknesses and find his way".

Charis Markopoulos: «PAOK has been setting a record in the past few years, because each season they start with a basic core, but also having added quite a few new players, trying to form a new team where the new players will be assimilated by the work system of the team. PAOK definitely needs time, but time works for the team, despite the fact that there are many new faces this season. The way of playing will not change much, the team can play good basketball and be a worthy opponent for any team. I hope and wish the coach remains healthy and has the same drive for work every day. If so, I think results will be coming soon".


-And what do you wish and want for your own team in the upcoming season?

 Soulis Markopoulos: «I'll say what I always say and wish for, for the team to competitive on the floor and play good basketball. I want the fans to come to the gym to see us and support us and when we find our way, we'll be bringing in the results we want through an exciting league".

Charis Markopoulos: «It's a new team, a new effort, a new stepping stone for the team and the city. We want to be competitive and after a while be able to play nice basketball".

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