A Greek referee who officiated a questionable local match in the country in 2018 when a club owner stormed the pitch with a gun admitted on Saturday that he allowed a match-changing decision out of fear for his family Goal.
Giorgos Kominis told the Betadress website he was “sickened” when people outside the dressing room threatened his pregnant wife while police stood by and watched.
Asked if he had changed the outcome of a local derby match between PAOK Thessaloniki and AEK Athens, out of concern for his family, Kominis replied: “Exactly.”
“This game has always haunted me throughout my career,” Kominis said.
He continued, “I lived in fear. When my wife was eight months pregnant, people used to follow her to the supermarket. I had never told anyone before.”
In one of the most controversial games in Greek league history, PAOK boss Ivan Savidis rushed onto the pitch to confront the referee in protest after a goal was disallowed in the 90th minute.
This week’s history ends: Ivan Savvidis, the owner of PAOK, returns from the pen on his upper arm with a rebuttal to his game, but only in the next minute. pic.twitter.com/4zsKv7CnN6
— Bruno Constant (@Bruno_Constant) March 12, 2018
Kuminis said on Saturday that the assistant referee told him, “literally, the goal was offside. (But) who can call it off here?”, referring to PAOK’s home fans.
Savvidis, a Greek-Russian tobacco industry worker and former Russian lawmaker for President Vladimir Putin’s party, was initially sentenced to 25 months’ probation over the incident.
In May, the Court of Appeal reduced his sentence to eight months suspended. Two years after the incident, Kominis was removed from the refereeing list.