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Ex-Greek FA chief accused of paying fire relief funds to Euro 2004 coach

Greek FA

Ex-Greek FA chief accused of paying fire relief funds to Euro 2004 coach

Ex-Greek FA chief accused of paying fire relief funds to Euro 2004 coach

Former Greek FA chief was accused of paying a bonus to Euro 2004-winning coach Rehhagel from money provided by UEFA for the reconstruction of a stadium

The former chief of the Greek Football Association was charged Monday, accused of paying a bonus to Euro 2004-winning coach Otto Rehhagel from money provided by UEFA for the reconstruction of a stadium.

The Greek FA, then under Vassilis Gagatsis -- now general manager of the Greek top flight -- received a million Swiss francs ($1,018,000; 857,000 euros) from then UEFA president Michel Platini, a judicial source said. The money was supposed to help rebuild a stadium in the Peloponnese that was damaged by wildfires that killed more than 70 people in 2007 and ravaged the region.

But those funds were instead used to pay a bonus to Rehhagel, the preliminary probe found. Nicknamed 'King Otto', the now 79-year-old Rehhagel became a national hero in 2004 after improbably leading Greece to victory at the European Championship in Portugal. The German also took the Greeks to Euro 2008 and the 2010 World Cup, after which he left when his contract ended.

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