The Agora


Losing game: Greece's weak defence against hooliganism

Season 3, Ep. 8

Following a deadly attack on a 19-year-old football fan in Thessaloniki in early February, the Greek government has announced new measures aimed at reining in hooliganism.

However, we've been here before in Greece. So, will the latest measures actually make any difference or are they just a knee-jerk, ineffective reaction to a problem that needs a much wider, consistent approach?

We start by asking whether Greece's thinking and methods when addressing sports-related violence are outdated. We spoke to Professor Geoff Pearson, a senior lecturer in criminal law at the University of Manchester, to get a better understanding of how this issue is addressed elsewhere. Geoff is an expert in hooliganism, crowd management and policing.

To discuss Greek football's particular ailments, we spoke to Alexandros Kottis, a freelance journalist based in Athens working for AFP and Courier International, among others. 

He recently wrote an article for the BBC about the sad state of Greek football.

Useful links

Professor Geoff Pearson's publications

The infinite chaos of Greek football: How the latest hope for change was lost by Alexandros Kottis

Alexandros's "Supporters" photo project -

Alkis Kampanos, a 19-year-old Greek football fan murdered for supporting the wrong team - The Athletic

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Rising sun: How will PASOK's revival affect Greek politics?

Season 3, Ep. 9
Greece’s socialist party, PASOK, was the powerhouse of Greek politics since the early 1980s. However, the debt crisis that emerged from 2009 sucked the life out of the centre-left grouping. Its share of the vote fell from 44 pct that year to roughly a tenth of that in 2015 as PASOK became a toxic political brand.Recently, though, the party has been making something of a comeback. It elected a new leader, MEP Nikos Androulakis, at the end of last year and has seen its poll ratings increase to such an extent that it is being talked about as a potential kingmaker or coalition partner in the next government.In the last few days, party members voted to reinstate the party’s traditional name, PASOK, alongside the Movement for Change (KINAL) moniker it had gone under for the last few years. With national elections due in the next 12 months, The Agora podcast takes a closer look at PASOK’s return to the centre stage and what this means for Greek politics.Phoebe Fronista speaks to Irene Kostaki, a former journalist who is now working as a political advisor on EU affairs to Androulakis to find out more about how revitalised the party is and what plans it has.Nick Malkoutzis speaks to political scientist Elias Dinas, currently the Swiss Chair in Federalism, Democracy and International Governance at the European University Institute in Florence, about the political landscape in Greece, the new cleavages that have formed and how PASOK’s revival fits into the broader picture.