AEK Move Clear At Top After Lamia Late Show
GREEK SUPERLEAGUE - MATCHDAY 4
|Lamia||0 - 1||AEK|
|Christodoulopoulos (P) 81'|
AEK Athens moved two points clear at the top of the SuperLeague after a controversial late penalty from Lazaros Christodoulopoulos earned the Kitrinomavri a 1-0 away win over Lamia in Sunday’s late Matchday 4 game.
Manolo Jimenez’s team, who were fresh off a 2-1 win over Rijeka in their Europa League group stage opener, were a shade of the side from that triumph last Thursday, struggling to get their passing game going.
But despite a below-par display the Athens club took all three points thanks to Christodoulopoulos’ spot-kick nine minutes from full-time, which was awarded after Lamia’s Spanish defender was adjudged to have fouled AEK striker Marko Livaja.
AEK now have 10 points from four matches, while Olympiacos and PAOK are next with eight points. Paninios can move level with AEK if they win at PAS Giannina in Monday’s final Matchday 4 fixture.
Replays suggested, however, that the referee got his decision wrong as the offence took place outside the penalty area.
The AEK camp will not lose any sleep over that, though, as the celebrated a great week and can now look forward to the visit of Olympiacos this coming Sunday for a mouth-watering top of the table derby showdown.
Lamia did actually give AEK a hard-time on the night, and in fact it was the hosts who had looked more likely to break the deadlock in the first half.
Their best chance came after 32 minutes when a shot from defender Stavros Vasilantonopoulos was parried away by AEK goalkeeper Giannis Anestis. The ball fell to Lamia’s Serbian midfielder Marko Blažić but his effort from point blank range with the goal at his mercy grazed the bar before going over.
AEK struggled to create scoring chances but finally got a lucky break for the penalty which allowed them to put some daylight between themselves and Olympiacos.