Former South Melbourne junior and Oakleigh Cannons player Apostolos Giannou continues to consistently find the back of the net for his Greek Superliga club Asteras Tripoli this season, leading to speculation he may be the target for a January transfer to one of the bigger European leagues.
His season tally of 12 goals from just 16 league goals has already surpassed his 10 goals of last season, and keeps him on track to win the Golden Boot for Greece’s top domestic competition.
The 25-year-old striker has played for a number of Greek clubs since he returned to the country of his birth at the age of 17 after playing much of his youth football in Melbourne.
The clubs include Apollon Kalamarias, Kavala, PAOK, Panionios, before joining Asteras. His form this season has recently earned him a guernsey with the senior Greek national team. Although contracted to Asteras till 2018, he has recently expressed in interview that he’d be open to a possible move to a bigger European League outside Greece.
Speaking on theworldgame.sbs.com.au, Giannou said: “I am at a good club and I’m enjoying my football, which is the main thing, but if something interesting came along then of course I’d think about it.
“If nothing happens, then I am happy to stay but I’d love to play in one of the bigger leagues in Europe and for me, my ambition, like I think any footballer, would be to play in the English Premier League. It would be hard to get into, but we can all dream, I guess. I think I might be suited to England.
“I like the one-or-two touch, fast-paced game. In Greece it’s a bit slower and I tended to enjoy the quicker tempo of the UEFA Europa League games we played earlier in the season.”
The striker’s agent, Jon-Paul Michail of FIA Sports Management, said a number of high-profile European and Asian clubs have expressed interest in Giannou.
“He’s probably the most in-form Australian striker playing anywhere in the world right now. Apo is a required player at Asteras and he is happy there, but this is football and there is a big market for him.”
For the time being, despite all the speculation, Giannou wants to keep doing what he’s been doing this season, which is regularly finding the net.
“I just need to keep doing what I’m doing,” he says, “and hopefully 2016 will be a good year for me. The aim at the start of the season was to equal last season’s total and I passed that already at the halfway point.
“As soon as you score one or two, you just want to get more and more. It’s been a positive season for me and I just want to keep the focus and make sure I stay fit and scoring.”