Monday, March 30, 2009

Kanakaris had a hard time against Eagles in his first season in Tasmania

Photos: (Top) Kostas Kanakaris lies injured; (Bottom) Olympic's new midfielder, Kostas Kanakaris

Hobart Olympic’s new Greek midfielder, Kostas Kanakaris, has already had a positive impact on the local league after just four games.

His technical skills are good and he is a constructive playmaker in midfield for Olympic.

The 19-year-old was born in Australia, but his family returned to Greece when he was just three years old.

It took Olympic several weeks to arrange a clearance for Kanakaris from Greece, which meant he missed the club’s first two Summer Cup games.

He played in the third, which ended in a draw with South Hobart, but Olympic won the penalty shoot-out.

His first league match was the 0-0 draw with Clarence United and he caught the eye with his industry and skills on a slippery pitch in torrential rain.

“The pitch was very wet and it was difficult to play good soccer,” Kanakaris said.

“We’ll have to do better in our next game.”

Kanakaris said he had returned to Australia to play soccer.

In Greece, he played for a neighbourhood team in the city of Ilion.

“I like playing in midfield because it’s all about passing, or making assists,” he said.

“I work on the skills by myself, after training.

“The coach exhausts us physically at training, but I work on my skills afterwards.”

Kanakaris, who is working as a tiler, believes that Olympic has a great chance of winning the title this year.

“We are really concentrated on our training and we are working hard as a team,” he said.

“Greek soccer is slower than here. It’s much quicker and more physical here.

“Here, players are fitter and strong, but in Greece the players are more technical.”

Kanakaris thinks South Hobart and Zebras are the teams to beat in Hobart and that hard training by Olympic should see them triumph.

Olympic have not made the best of starts to the league season.

Sunday’s 1-0 loss to New Town Eagles dropped Olympic to second-last on the ladder.

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