Athens-based club Panathinaikos have recently signed a contract to build a new, modern multi-purpose complex for their team with plans to move into the stadium by 2026.
In a statement issued on the club’s website, Panathinaikos said the signing of the final construction contract for the stadium is one of the most important moments in the history of the club.
In November 2020, Memorandum of Understanding was signed by the Greek government for this project that promised to deliver a 40,000 seat stadium with a 4-star FIFA international standard rating as well as a bigger multi-purpose complex. This complex would feature a 12,500-seat basketball arena, a 1,500-capacity volleyball venue, an Olympic-sized swimming pool, other facilities and at least 80 acres of green spaces. However, works are finally going to be done now.
The entire project has a budget of €163.5m ($269.5m AUD), with the stadium itself set to cost around €72m ($118.7m AUD). Another benefit of this long-term expensive project is the goal that it will not only transform Panathinaikos as a club, but also be of use for the Greek national team and its bigger international matches, which was a key talking point in negotiations.
Yannis Alafouzos, shareholder PAE Panathinaikos, expressed his delight at the proposed revolutionary project.
“Today is a historic moment for Panathinaikos. A decade-long dream, for the club to acquire its own home, is entering the implementation phase,” he said via press release.
“Panathinaikos changes level with the stadium in Botanikos. The club’s cell, the Sports Club, will finally acquire the facilities that befit the history of Greece’s most victorious club. It is an honour for me that during my days in the ownership of PAE, the completely fair request of Panathinaikos to acquire its own stadium is satisfied.”
Panathinaikos currently plays home matches at the Olympic Stadium, which also hosts rival Super League club AEK Athens.
This change is necessary for one of the oldest and most successful clubs in Greece, who need a stadium of their own as well as the multi-sport complex to advance their player development for the football team as well as focusing more on their basketball side in the Euro League. There is a clear plan in place, starting with this project, to become a strong name in Europe across multiple sports.