Papadopoulos back as Greeks bow out

Last updated : 22 May 2002 By Tony Scholes

They played their last group game against the Czech Republic and picked up their first point of the tournament with a 1-1 draw in their last game.

They were behind in the first half after conceding a hotly disputed penalty but took the game to the Czechs in the second half. Just after the hour mark Papadopoulos had a header saved by keeper Cech but just a few minutes later the Greeks were level with a goal from Kyriazis. The Iraklis player hit home from eight yards out after a bad punch from Cech.

Greek Coach Angelos Michalopoulos said after the game,

"Unfortunately, we did not qualify for the next round. We played a poor match against Belgium, were nervous against France because of the first match and today we tried harder and played better but not as good as we know we can.

"We were unlucky. We saw on the television replays that the penalty was not a penalty - and we didn't show the real face of the team. We could have qualified for the next round if the referee had not given the penalty, but that's football.

"I would like to congratulate my players. I hope they will be healthy in the future and I will love them forever. I know they can go on and make great careers in football."

Papadopoulos will be 21 in September and this tournament will have brought his under 21 international career to an end.