Nikos Dabizas is a courageous central defender signed from Olympiakos in March 1998, and became the first Greek to play in an English FA Cup Final two months later, and repeated the honour in 1999. Dabizas has been capped 57 times for Greece but yet to score an international goal.
Nikos began his career with Greek Second Division club Pontii Verias, and joined Olympiakos in 1994, where he won a Greek Championship in 1997. Kenny Dalglish paid £1.3m to bring him to Tyneside, where the fans immediately took to his flamboyant style. The 2000/01 season was an injury ravaged one for the popular Greek after a serious knee problem in only the second game of the season meant months of rehabilitation back in Greece and an eight month wait before he was able to play football again.
He came back and in 2001-02, played some fantastic matches for Toon and formed a great partnership with Andy O'Brien in the center in Newcastle's defence. He helped Newcastle to get to to Champions League and has already played there with Olympiakos.
Dabizas is also good in attack, and has scored 14 goals for the Magpies by the end of 2002-03 and is the highest scoring center back in Newcastle's history, overtaking Philippe Albert's tally of 12 goals.
Unfortuantly for Nikos, he lost his place to Jonathan Woodgate after his arrival in January 2003, and was put on the transfer list in June. Dabizas will be hoping that he gets another chance to prove himself in the United side, but will have to fight hard from now on for his place.