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Some actions speak louder than words. They certainly do in the case of Yannis Chloros. The Greek professional footballer showed the entire football world what fair play is really about.

In Greece, Chloros is the talk of the town after his act last Saturday, when his team Nea Ionia visited Ilisiakos in the Greek third league. One of his teammates accidently collided with Ilisiakos' goalkeeper Michalis Sifakis. The goalkeeper remained laying on the field, while the ball rolled to Chloros' feet, a few meters away from the empty goal. It was easy to put the ball in the back of the net. But Chloros refused to do so. He noticed Sifakis was in pain and decided to shoot the ball across the backline.

"My initial thought was to kick the ball out of play, out of fear that the goalkeeper of Ilisiakos was suffering from a serious injury. I was worried that he might lose consciousness", Chloros recalled. "Fortunately, everything went well."

Ever since, football fans in Greece are talking about the "Play of the Year", referring to Chloros' act of sportsmanship. Goalkeeper Sifakis was one of the first to thank his colleague. He was among others followed by both club presidents, who emphasised that "health and ethics matter more than any sports result".

Chloros was also congratulated by the Board of Directors of PSAP – the Greek professional footballers association, that stated to be "very proud". He actually is a Board Member himself. This past summer he even participated in the FIFPro Central Europe Tournament, after which he joined Nea Ionia.

Last but not least, Chloros was honored by the Greek Deputy Minister of Sports, Yannis Andrianos, who invited the player to his office and personally congratulated him. Deputy Minister Andrianos spoke of a significant act. "This is the kind of message that we want to convey when it comes to football and to sports. This is the true meaning of sports: the competition, the fair play, and facing the opponent, not as an enemy but as a rival and competitor."

"It is very important that we have athletes who are able to teach sports' ethic. This live example, is the best response to those who have other opinions concerning sports; to those who see sports from a wrong perspective, and who try to spread this to all social aspects."

Chloros: "The Deputy Minister congratulated me for my conduct, for which I thanked him."

"We spoke in general, about the problems in Greek football. As a PSAP Board Member I took advantage of the opportunity posing a number of questions concerning football situation. Undeniably, Mr. Andrianos showed understanding and committed himself to arranging a meeting with PSAP."

Chloros is delighted with all the praise for his fair-play act. "It pleases me, not in a way to promote myself, but because I hope that many will follow and imitate this behavior; young football players, professional football players and all athletes, in general."

 

See the mentioned action around: 1h15m55s.