Piraeus (Greece) (AFP) – Olympiakos president Evangelos Marinakis fined the team 400,000 euros ($490,000) on Monday and ordered the club’s under-performing players to go on holiday until the end of the season.
Marinakis, who also owns English second-division side Nottingham Forest, was angry at Sunday’s 1-1 draw at Levadiakos that left the defending Greek league champions in third place.
“I will build Olympiakos from the beginning and it will become the team we are dreaming of. I and the rest of the fans have tolerated you enough. You will leave today and go on holiday,” Marinakis was quoted in the Greek media as telling the players.
He said very few in the current squad will be retained for the final three matches of the campaign, with replacements to be called up from the under-20 team.
“The amateur teams live with the basics, they love Olympiakos and their supporters much more than you do,” he continued, vowing to reinvest money collected from the fines into the club’s amateur teams.
“(You think more about) the nice houses you live in and your cars and don’t care about the team,” Marinakis reportedly told players.
“I pay millions for you to have everything. With your actions I fired three coaches. But at the end it looks like you were at fault.”
Marinakis said half the fine was for last weekend’s draw against Levadiakos with the remaining 200,000 euros punishment for a recent 1-1 draw against arch rivals Panathinaikos.
Third-placed Olympiakos trail leaders AEK Athens by nine points, with the former deducted three points over fan violence during their 2-1 loss to AEK in February.