Soccer-Greece sack coach Skibbe after bad Nations League run

ATHENS, Oct 25 (Reuters) - Greece have parted ways with German coach Michael Skibbe after the team’s disappointing run in the Nations League, the Football Association (EPO) said on Thursday.

The EPO appointed 65-year-old Angelos Anastasiadis as his successor, the first Greek coach for the national team, who is not an interim solution, in 17 years.

Skibbe had taken over in 2015 after the 2004 European champions’ failure to qualify for Euro 2016 and last year signed a contract extension to include Euro 2020 if they qualified.

The former Bundesliga coach then narrowly missed out on the 2018 World Cup when Greece finished second in their qualifying group but lost in a playoff to eventual runners-up Croatia.

But their performances in League C of the newly-created Nations League sealed his exit after Greece won two matches and lost the other two to lie in second place on six points, six behind leaders Finland.

“We decided to end our cooperation with Mr Skibbe and at the same time it was decided to bring in Angelos Anastasiadis,” Greek FA President Vangelis Grammenos told reporters.

“The FA’s decision, as is easily understood, is the result of the bad run and bad results recently.”

Anastasiadis, whose contract will run to December 2019, has coached several clubs in Greece and was Cyprus coach from 2004-11 but has not worked at a club since 2016. (Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; editing by Martyn Herman)