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Greece is the word

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Greece's improbable but deserved victory at UEFA EURO 2004™ has stunned the whole of Europe. rounds up media reaction from the 14 other nations who took part in these finals and finds a shared disbelief in the success of Otto Rehhagel and his players.

It's not a dream. Greece are the champions! Charisteas's goal made eleven million Greeks the happiest nation in the world. The 4th of July must be Greece's new national holiday. Otto's warriors marched on to a surprising but well deserved triumph. Eusébio was among the spectators and he would probably have needed to come on to the pitch if his compatriots were to ever get past the resilient Greek defence. That defence was the best at EURO 2004 and no one could beat them. Sensational.
(Bulgaria - Meridian Match)


Greece are European champions! Believe it or not! Sensational, a real football miracle, unbelivable. Otto Rehhagel set the unbreakable defence and Greece deserved this unbelievable triumph. Like before at EURO 2004, Greece played with very high discipline, and with a strong and solid defence they didn't allow Portugal to get near their goal and produce any serious threat. Figo and company were weak, short of ideas and creativity. The Greeks were like football gods at the Luz last night.
(Croatia - Sportske novosti)


Charisteas sent shockwaves through the 62,000 in Estádio da Luz in Lisbon, as he headed the ball powerfully past the Portuguese keeper Ricardo. The Greek way of playing may and will be criticised but, the fact is, this underestimated Greece team are European champions."
(Denmark - Ekstra Bladet)


A tear flowed down the face of the beautiful game last night. An evening that was heaven for Hellas will be remembered as a triumph of tactics over instinct, of set-piece preparation that saw Angelos Charisteas head the Greeks, the 100-1 outsiders as EURO 2004 opened, to the most improbable of victories. If Greece's moment in the international sun was a success for organisation, good coaching and supreme fitness, last night's showdown of European football will trigger too many laments.
(England - Daily Telegraph)


Greece, heroes of a modern mythology, caused one of the biggest surprises ever in football history at the Luz stadium. Winning the EURO 2004 final against the arch-favourites of Portugal, Otto Rehhagel's players achieved their Olympus. Their success can be compared with Uruguay's victory against Brazil in the 1950 World Cup or Germany's win over Hungary in 1954 or even to Denmark's achievement at EURO 92.
(France - Le Parisien/Aujourd'hui en France)


50 years after the 'Wunder von Bern', Otto Rehhagel led Greece to the biggest sensation in the history of the European Championship. A goal from Bremen striker Angelos Charisteas on 57 minutes gave the Hellenic outsiders a surprising 1-0 win over favourites Portugal. The 15,000 Greek fans among the 62,865 spectators in the sold-out Estádio da Luz celebrated their side's first-ever trophy in a major tournament as Portugal failed to avenge their 2-1 defeat in the opening match.
(Germany - Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung)


Spoilsports from the start to the finish. Greece go into the book of the most sensational achievements in football history. More sensational than Denmark, the European champions in 1992, this win can be compared to the legendary triumph of Uruguay, who in 1950 in Rio de Janeiro took the World Cup from Brazil. But that Uruguay was full of great players and this Greece has no stars. They haven't stolen anything - to be clear, they just prefer to destroy the opponent's play instead of playing their own game.
(Italy - Gazzetta dello Sport)


Many do not appreciate the tactics of the new champions but still there is no reason to doubt their right to this success as they defeated Portugal twice and sent reigning champions France and the Czech Republic home. It would be very difficult to grasp the size of the subsequent party in Athens.
(Latvia - Diena)


The triumph of Greek football was confirmed on Sunday night. In Lisbon, FC Hellas were stronger once again than the host team. Charisteas scored the winning goal in the second half. As in the opening game, the Portuguese weren't able to get to grips with the Greeks' 'cement' football. With that, Greece have become European champions.
(Netherlands - De Telegraaf)


Just think - had Russia converted a single chance of the many they created against Greece the future winners would have been stopped in their tracks. But there is no sense in recalling that now. Let us think about another thing - that 65-year-old Otto Rehagel is the main hero of the championship. He did not possess the strongest team in the competition, but it proved not to be decisive. Because this team had the wisest and the most cunning head coach, a head coach who outplayed everyone.
(Russia - Sport-Express)


Greece are champions of Europe. Believe me, it is not a dream. It is true, it is a reality. The captain, Theodoros Zagorakis, the best player in the stadium, raised the cup to the sky in Lisbon. These celebrations may be the first and only ever time for the Greeks. Angelos Charisteas was already the hero against Spain and France and, from yesterday, he is the seventh Greek god. Zeus, Apollo, Hermes, Ares, Poseidón, Ifestos, now Charisteas.
(Spain - Marca)


Greece are the top team. The genius behind Greece is already royalty in Germany. It is King Otto, who has for a long time demonstrated his ability of saving teams that appear to have lost before the start of the game. He was unpopular in Greece for a long time but by making them Europe's top football nation last night, King Otto has become royalty in another football kingdom. He is the man who achieves the impossible.
(Sweden - Aftonbladet)


The sensation is complete: football minnows Greece have beaten Portugal 1-0 in the European Championship final. Angelos Charisteas scored the golden goal. Exactly 50 years to the day after the 'Miracle of Berne', when Germany beat Hungary 3-2 in the World Cup final, football has written a new fairy tale - this time the 'Miracle of Lisbon'. It is even more remarkable than the 1992 European Championship (which had only eight teams), when Denmark became European champions after coming straight from their holidays because Yugoslavia were unable to take part.
(Switzerland - Blick)


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