Skirting around the issue
French soccer player and Panathinaikos captain Djibril Cisse has caused a stir in Greece by wearing a skirt to an awards ceremony.
This comes days before his team is set to take on Super League leader Olympiakos in the crucial derby game, known to the world over as the Derby of the Eternal Enemies.
The Panathnaikos captain and striker was wearing the Jean-Paul Gaultier number when he attended the Status magazine Men of the Year Awards, where he picked up a prize.
His appearance in the long black skirt created an immediate response by the media, particularly Greece's sports newspapers ahead of the all-important derby match.
The Panathinaikos supporting papers suggested that Cisse was putting his manhood on display, while the Olympiakos backed publications suggested he wear the skirt when he steps out as striker in the derby game.
The derby match on Saturday, which kicks off at 7.30 pm, is seen as a potential decider because Olympiakos is seven points ahead of Panathinaikos.
A win for Olympiakos could mean it's curtains for Panathnaikos as they would have a ten point advantage, and with just seven games left, a hard task to beat them. But a win for Panathnaikos could mean a play for the title.
The known rivalry between Panathinaikos and Olympiakos has been inflamed by Cisse's act of defiance ahead of the game on Saturday.
Unbeknownst to Cisse how deep-seeded this arch-rivalry was, he certainly discovered this during the derby game in 2010, when he scored two goals and his team beat Olympiakos 2-1.
From then, Cisse has been on Olympiakos's radar as the man to stop.
But not one to shy away from a threat, Cisse faces it head on by an outfit choice that demands attention.
French designer Jean Paul Gaultier, a regular visitor to Greece, isn't shy of making outlandish fashion statements with his clothing, and has created various skirts for men, including a line inspired by the Greek "foustanela" as worn by Presidential Guard.
The French-born striker is known for his flamboyance, his often changing hairstyles and colours and wearing extravagant clothes.
His loyalty to Panathnaikos knows no bounds, and he has shown his mark of respect for the team that made his career by getting a tattoo of the club's Green symbol - to add to his growing collection of body art.
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