AEK sink Panionios to move two points clear at SuperLeague summit
GREEK SUPERLEAGUE - MATCHDAY 24
|AEK||1 - 0||Panionios|
AEK moved two points clear of PAOK at the top of the SuperLeague table on Sunday after defeating Panionios 1-0 in a closely-contested clash at the Olympic Stadium, while Larissa came crashing back down to earth from their mid-week cup win over AEK by suffering a 2-1 defeat at Levadiakos.
Marko Livaja’s first-half header have Manolo Jimenez’s team all three points and allowed the Kitrinomavri to take advantage of PAOK’s first defeat in 16 matches as the Salonica club went down 3-2 at Asteras Tripolis earlier in the day.
As a result of their win, AEK moved onto 54 points, two points clear of second-placed PAOK who are on 52 - pending the result of the disciplinary proceedings concerning their cancelled derby clash with Olympiacos last weekend which could see them docked three points.
All attention now switches to yet another mouthwatering derby match between PAOK and AEK at the Toumba next weekend.
AEK, who came into the match on the back of a shock 2-1 defeat by Larissa in the first leg of their Greek Cup semi-final in mid-week, were worthy winners against the Panthers, controlling much of the possession as well as creating a hatful of scoring chances.
After a bright opening, AEK went ahead in the 21st minute when Croatian forward Livaja headed in a brilliant right-wing cross from Rodrigo Galo.
The home side missed a golden chance to make it 2-0 just four minutes later and put the game to bed when Livaja sent Argentine forward Sergio Araujo clean through on goal, but the 26-year-old saw his show saved by Panionios goalkeeper Matic Kotnik.
Kotnik then got a helping hand from defender Valentinos Vlachos who cleaned the ball off the line from Araujo’s attempt following the rebound.
AEK continued to look the more threatening side into the second half, with Panionios once again failing to offer much going forward, chalking up a third league game in a row without scoring a goal.
|Levadiakos||2 - 1||Larissa|
Meanwhle in Livadeia, Larissa looked to have taken the positive momentum from their 2-1 Greek Cup semi-final, first leg win against AEK into their match with Levadiakos after taking a 1-0 lead thanks to Sandi Krizman in the 43rd minute.
But two quick goals in the space of three minutes mid-way through the second half saw the match turned on its head, with strikes from Chumbinho (60) and Marko Markovski (63) giving the home side the advantage.
Those two goals took the stuffing out of the visitors, who struggled to create any further scoring chances and suffered a defeat which leaves them languising down in 12th place and now four points behind Levadiakos.