NEW YORK – In an open letter to the fans of Panathinaikos dated May 11, Greek-American businessman, lawyer, and Hellenic-American Chamber of Commerce President Markos Drakotos announced the intention of his business group to purchase the majority stake in Panathinaikos.
In particular, Drakotos, addressing the friends of the "greens" compares the glorious moments of Panathinaikos with the current image of the soccer team's declining game, blaming the current administration, emphasizing that an alternative path is now offered.
He then emphasizes that the business group, once it has collected the necessary financial data, intends to submit a takeover proposal.
The text of the letter follows:
Message to Panathinaikos’ friends
“For the Panathinaikos We Deserve”
New York, May 11, 2021
“There is no other great club …” that is Panathinaikos, the largest and most glorious club in Greece with over 1500 titles since its inception. It’s Wembley, the intercontinental final, the great marches in Europe, the 4-0 win over Olympiakos in the 1986 Greek Cup final, the six European basketball games, Vazeha’s goal in Amsterdam, Brankovic’s stop in Paris, the Diamantidis’ hug with Obradovic in Barcelona, his millions of friends around the world, and more who cannot be captured in a text message.
In recent years the football department has been in a deep crisis. The club was one step ahead of relegation and remained in the category due to a change in licensing rules while being banned from European competitions for three years due to debt. This year, unfortunately, eleven years have passed since winning the last league and participating in the Champions League groups and seven years since winning the last title. Until a few days ago, the team had to fight hard to secure a place in the… quartet! Situations that would have been unthinkable for our club a few years ago.
And worst of all, there is no prospect of competition recovery in the near future. This ongoing crisis has now become a permanent situation that is shrinking the club from day to day and not only robs it of the opportunity to win titles, but also to attract new fans and supporters. Conditions today in no way reflect the vision the great George Kalafatis had when he started the Panathinaikos Athletic Club.
The inaction, the shyness and the fatalistic acceptance of the current situation will, with mathematical precision, lead our team to fall completely into disrepute. Those interested in the future of this historic club must band together and take action to take responsibility for its restoration. For the unique special moments he gave us, the joys, the emotions, the travels, the history and the legacy he carries on his back. Despite all of this, we have decided to show our interest in the practice because we want to remain true to the principles and values with which we have been cultivated as Panathinaikos, because we reciprocate what it has given us and do it great again want. so that many more generations of proud will follow. Panathinaikos.
For our part, we want to be absolutely clear in all directions: The aim of this initiative is for Panathinaikos to return to the top of the Greek league and at the same time to become competitive again at the highest European inter-club level.
This initiative is based on a pure and selfless love for the largest club in the country and a desire to gradually return to the top. The initiative is supported by a group of entrepreneurs who have the will and the financial surface to invest in the group. A few months ago, Mr Ioannis Alafouzos accepted a very tempting and fair initial proposal that could be the basis for further discussion, provided that he really intends to transfer his shares and, in the first phase, send the group’s financial data.
Our intention is to proceed with the utmost seriousness and responsibility, while respecting the history of the club and its world. That is why we insist on the financial elements. In this regard, after collecting information about the status of the team for the first time, we intend to move on to a second phase, the direct assignment of auditors of recognized standing to a foreign company, for a full audit of the team’s financial information, to our Club Submit final proposal.
We ask the population of Panathinaikos as a whole to support this initiative. We are all tired of the current situation. The initial sadness turned into anger and resentment and ended in indifference. Our Sundays are no longer interesting. There are many Panathinaikos fans who don’t see the team’s games today because they have nothing to expect, to worry about, to expect. However, we cannot compromise on this. We must give all Panathinaikos the opportunity to pass on the Panathinaikos’ pride to their children not only through historical flashbacks, but also through modern successes, in order to fill schools and neighborhoods all over Greece with green jerseys again. The club has great potential and can do a lot more.
Friends of Panathinaikos,
It would be a great honor for us to take over the management of Panathinaikos and work hard to bring the team the love, respect and passion it takes to return to the top. They have been telling you for so many years that there is no alternative. Now you know it isn’t. There is an alternative and reliable solution. We are here.
Markos L. Drakotos.