THE Fotis Takianoswas officially introduced as his new coach PAOK. The successor of Aris Lykogiannis did his first training and declared himself ready for the challenge.
“I want to start by saying a big thank you to the management for trusting me. My third term in the PAOK family begins. I know the size of the team, the demands from management, people and name. All this is something that makes me feel happy about the opportunity to work at a big club and together with the management and the people, try to do the best we can so that the team realizes the short and long term goals. In the short term, it is to enable the team to occupy the best possible position in the league. As we look further than this year, we want to build a core of players that is required for a team that wants to have high demands. At the given time, there will be a 100% effort with a lot of concentration to be happy at the end of this season“, he initially reported.
On whether he is considering immediate intervention and what it would be: “My primary goal is to make this team perform better. I have seen that the existing hardware has room for improvement and can fill the gaps that seem to be missing. It takes a reasonable amount of time, not to see the team, but to discern to what extent the existing players can improve and fill the gaps.”
As to whether there has been any suggestion of his own for changes: “During the contacts with the management, we concluded that everything will be done for the team to be strong until the end. I think some things can be covered internally. The team claims a very good position in the final standings. The track so far compared to her until the end, could be better. Our level of concentration will increase because we have in front of us incentives to improve.”
On the lack of stability and how it can be overcome: “Discerning where the problem is, we should find a way to solve it. As long as we find stability, our image will improve. The goal is for players to perform better over a long period of time and under a specific tactic. The team has some ups and downs that we will try to improve.”
Regarding the fact that the Cup and Europe are over and the continuation of the league: “We have the goal of the championship left. The size of PAOK creates an obligation for all of us to give 100% and try to reach the highest goal we can. We want PAOK to finish as high as possible. This six-game mini-league, there is motivation and obligation on a daily basis.”
On the image of the team in the last month that seemed to have stalled and how this will change: “To give a team that it’s not working as it should, it’s clear that he’s been affected by something. The competitive factors, all teams have good and bad seasons. This can be considered normal. It is a prerequisite for a team to be good on all four lines, to have homogeneity, a family atmosphere and everyone playing together to win. Those in the group must place themselves under the group. Because no team can progress when there is no homogeneity and mental union of all, it cannot progress in the competitive part as well. It is a primary goal to create such an environment in the team, to fight for each other for the next six matches, but we have to put the part of the next season as well. We will try to build solid foundations. Big teams have big visions and we want to build. The first thing is how there will be the mental union of all the actors.”
On his previous two terms and whether he would ever consider a return: “I got involved in PAOK from the player process and later as an assistant coach. This vaccination created a process for me, which I always had at the level of a dream, to be able to work with the team again. It was always in my mind. Regardless of whether my presence as a player is not quite as I would like. There was always the desire to be here again, to give 100%. No one should forget that PAOK is a great club, we who have left the team, are obliged to envision how we will be given the opportunity to help again”.
For the team he and the fans want to see: “I would like a team to appear on the field in complete homogeneity, with one sacrificing for the other. A team that will play at high energy levels, that will fight for every possession. In any difficult period of the game, as a team or individually, the whole team should be with the player who is having a bad night and all this is clearly visible to the one watching the game With the effort of the players, the communication and the support of one to the other. We all want to see it and it is something that PAOK fans also like. To see players on the field fighting.”
On whether he is thinking about bringing in some young players: “In the youth and children’s team that I have seen, there are remarkable and talented children. Of course, talent alone is not enough, hard work is needed. The second is the correct process of inclusion and promotion. When it is decided that space will be given to new children, to have the opportunity, in the summer, they should be given the corresponding space. We will try, but it is a more general plan, to give them the space to work. In the summer, the promotion planning will be put on a more concrete basis. I hope that during my term we will be able to put in the team guys from the infrastructure departments. It will be something ideal.”
On whether he had any discussion with Aris Lykogiannis: “No such contact was made, with the rationale that he has a clear picture of the team. It helped that I was out of the coaching process, so I was watching the games on a scouting level. Not only what the team was playing, but the players as well, I have a fully up-to-date file.”
On parts of the team he liked and whether he is considering a European prospect for next season: “The team is very talented offensively. He can attack with different players, with high percentages in their performance, over a long period of time. I would put the weakness mainly in the defensive part. We should see the team playing with higher energy, more passion. The prospect of European participation in the BCL is something that is motivating. This also has to do with how we will create some conditions so that we don’t start building the team from scratch in the summer. We want there to be a connection from this space.”
For the “trunk” ahead of next season and to have thought about some renewals: “The point in time we are in, the proposals for renewal, does not help. Discussions will take place at the end of the year. It is one of the most basic things, to create even a small trunk for the year”.
Fotis Takianos was introduced by the president of KAE, Thanasis Hatzopoulos. “I welcome the coach to the PAOK family, for the third time. I wish him from the bottom of my heart what we dream and he himself dreams. To be healthy and what we want as management and as a team is to finish as high as possible in the league. I had to give the team an electric shock. I could see that the team and with these ups and downs in performance, we were not what we started with. For this reason, I made the decision, after a discussion with my colleagues.”».
When asked about the possibility of changes to the roster, he answered: “Mania you have to change the team… We will see when the time comes. The coach will see the team and we will go by seeing and doing. It is unfair to the children who struggle in the matches to talk about changes. Especially guys who had twice as many offers and stayed here, with nothing coming out. Not to say that it is a shame to have this conversation».
OUTLOUD ??? #coachtakianos pic.twitter.com/SvTHBw5asQ
— PAOK BC (@PAOKbasketball) February 22, 2023
Source: Sport Fm
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