- Atromitos FC
- PLAYERS & STAFF
The history of Atromitos began 82 years ago when the club was officially founded in May 1923.
There had been a league however, since 1920, and that was when Kalomvounis, Petos, Glykofridis, Stathopoulos, Synodinos, Rigopoulos, Stamatopoulos and other students who lived in Victoria Square (which was then called kyriakou Square), decided to realise a crazy dream and form their own football team.
In 1923, Vaggelis Stamatis, the teacher of maths and an old member of the Panhellenic football League, joined the administration board of Atromitos.
At this time Stamatis was one of the big names of pre-war Greek football history, and his appearance in combination with the organised effort of several friends or fans of football who lived in Victoria square, made the team very important to Athenian football and very attractive to the league of Athens.
In 1924, they were accepted into the league but the absolute official signature of the foundation was written in 1925.
At this time Atromitos played in the football grounds of Panellinios and Panathinaikos which were in the park of Aris, and during their first spell in the first division they gained third place behind Panathinaikos and AEK.
The team were a very significant side before the war in the league of EPSA, and they were in the first division of the Athinian league 14 times.
The most distinguished year was 1928 when they were declared champions of Athens, beating Goudi 4-3 in the final game in the stadium of Rouf. As champions of Athens they took part in the first Panhellenic championship which was organised in 1928 by EPO.
On the 24th of May they were beaten 3-1 away by Aris (who later became champions) and another defeat on the 3rd of June saw them lose to Ethnicos Pireaus 5-0. The 10th of June brought only a draw at home against Ethnicos 1-1, and the final blow came seven days later when they lost again to Aris 3-1.
During the following 2 years Atromitos stayed in the upper part of the first division of Athens and in 1929 they finished third behind Panathinaikos and AEK. In 1930 they finished third again, this time with Panathinaikos becoming champions and AEK in second place.
In 1932, Iosiph Chouroukchoglou and Nikolaos Epioglou made the big decision to move the club to the town of Peristeri.
The main reason for this was that the club had been in the same area as Panathinaikos, which didn't leave much opportunity for Atromitos to establish a large fan base or develop a unique identity amongst the teams playing in the championship.
In the following three decades the team appeared in the second division until 1959.
In 1963 they played in the second division of the national league (southern region), but it was always their aim to play in the first division, a goal they achieved sometime later.
A special reference should be made here to the player Mugandi Chimaga, who died so pointlessly in 1996 while playing in the Megaro ground, due to the unavailability of an ambulance to take him to hospital.
Past chairmen of the club have been virtuous men, some with advantages and some with disadvantages, but even those without a large financial background have taken care of Atromitos to the best of their abilities, portraying earnestness, fervour and love for the club.
Some of them achieved their goals, some not. There is no attempt to single any one of them out here, for any reason, we simply want to remind you of the men who had the privilege to run the team from the west suburbs.
It started with Iosiph Chouroukchoglou, followed by Nikolaos Epioglou , Nikolaos Chakiris, Adonis Galaios, Stefanos Kaloumenos, Evaggelos Stais, Takis Anevlavis, Adonis Ksipnitos, Pavlos Panoutsopoulos, Stamatis Glykos, Andreas Koulopoulos, Giorgos Douros, Vasilis Petrou, Yiannis Kourtis, Kostas Stathakis, Vasilis Chigos, Tasos Papanikolas and the present Chairman Giorgos Spanos.
FIRST DIVISION NATIONAL LEAGUE
The record of the team in this division is not outstanding as yet, but they have had some famous victories which have made the fans very proud.
One of these was in 1976 when they managed to beat the champions PAOK in the Touba ground.
Going back to 1928, they had victories mainly in local championships but from 1931 they started having Panhellenic success.
In May 1972 their dream became reality, and Atromitos, under the coaching of Savva Papazoulou, won promotion to the first division. The main victory which defined the 'blue and whites' during this time, was their win at home over AEK 1-0, featuring Papaioannou, Erea, Ravousi and Theodoridis etc.
However, the first division proved to be a difficult experience for them and they were relegated the following year
In 1975 the club returned to the first division, this time better prepared and with a large support behind them who packed the ground every game to watch them claim 13th position and secure their place in the top flight.
The best moments of that year were the draws against the champions Panathinaikos in the Karaiskaki ground, and against Panathinaikos, AEK and Aris at Peristeri. In 1976 the team became more powerful and achieved 9th position, the best in their history.
This was also the year of their sensational victory, away to the mighty PAOK, with Kourdas, Terzanidis, Sarafis, Iosifidis. At the same time they drew with the cup holders Iraklis, although Iraklis had many great players, Hadgipanagis, Kousoulakis, Gessios and Nikoloudis.
In 1977 they suffered and the team from the west suburbs didn't play well at all except for a draw at home against Panathinaikos whose team included Domazos, Adoniadis and Eleftherakis.
In 1981 the expectation of the fans was huge, as great players like Stylianopoulos, Alvarez, Toskas and Athanasopoulos were now playing for the club, but unfortunately, in spite of the high ambition, the team played for the last time in the top games and once more returned to the lower divisions.
After 8 years of suffering the nightmare of playing in the third division, they finally won promotion back to the second division in May 2002, by beating Levadiakos in the Patra stadium.
Among the notable achievements of the club is the 1991 landmark moment when the team became the first to gain more than 900 points in the second division.
Many different elements exist in the history of any football club, and are an integral part of the story and tradition of that club. One of the strongest of these elements is the home ground.
The home of Atromitos, which in latter years has been neglected, and in no way resembles the old victorious times when, with a rattle in one hand and a Somali cake in the other, the fans gathered in the morning to first watch minor games, and then the Atromitos game.
The stories the old men can tell you about those times are endless, and often exaggerated, but they reveal a love for the team that represented their part of society, a part which had grown to become the fourth largest municipality in Greece. Some of them remember Saturday mornings when they went to clear the pitch of stones, so they could get in to see the game on Sunday for free.
Primarily the first home ground of Atromitos was the ground of 'Bravery', which was beyond the last 'shanty town' of Evaggelistria.
In 1953 they moved to their present location which only had central stands for the spectators, and the changing rooms were a small room at the end of the stands.
Much later a larger stand holding 6000 spectators was built but this didn't get full during the games, only during the summer concerts of the Scorpions and Guns and Roses etc.
The only exception was the cup game between Haidari and Olympiakos (0-7) in 1991 when the stadium was full with 13000 spectators sitting or standing.
During the chairmanship of Victor Mitropoulos in EPAE, blue and white plastic seats were installed in the central stand
One and a half years ago they installed floodlights and renovated the running track so the ground could be used as a coaching facility during the Olympic Games.
Under the football ground there are spaces and facilities for activities such as wrestling, chess and boxing etc., and a room has been donated to the fire service and one to the scouts.
Also underneath the stands, the organised fan club - 'The Fendayin' have a space for themselves.