SLGR Matchday 18 Preview: Olympiacos And PAOK In Home Tests, AEK Away To Larisa

SLGR Matchday 18 Preview: Olympiacos And PAOK In Home Tests, AEK Away To Larisa
 

GREEK SUPERLEAGUE - MATCHDAY 18

Date Home Team Time Away Team
20-Jan-18 Platanias 8:00 AM Levadiakos
20-Jan-18 Panathinaikos 10:15 AM Kerkyra
20-Jan-18 Larissa 12:30 AM AEK
21-Jan-18 PAOK 8:00 AM Apollon Smyrnis
21-Jan-18 PAS Giannina 10:15 AM Atromitos
21-Jan-18 Panetolikos 10:15 AM Panionios
21-Jan-18 Olympiacos 12:30 PM Xanthi
22-Jan-18 Lamia 12:30 PM Asteras Tripolis

 

AGONAsport’s George Tsitsonis brings you a full preview for matchday 17 of the Greek SuperLeague.

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The best title race in Greece in years takes another turn this weekend in Matchday 18 action of the Greek Super League. While a defeat for Atromitos last weekend has dropped them off the pace a little, the trio of Olympiacos, PAOK, and AEK are all in good form and separated by only a point atop the standings.

Leaders Olympiacos take on Xanthi this weekend in the AGONAsport Match of the Week. While the Piraeus side have been in superb form, they are being chased relentlessly by their two rivals and will have to maintain their best in the final 12 matches in order to win their 8th consecutive title. Xanthi, currently 7th, will provide a stern test for the hosts on Sunday night.

AEK have a tricky encounter with Larisa on Saturday as they travel to take on the side from Thessaly. Larisa are a strong home team and have recovered from a poor start to the season.

PAOK meanwhile, have a better match on paper, at home to Apollon Smirnis. The Thessaloniki giants are gearing up for their 6th consecutive win. Apollon meanwhile would be happy with a point as they continue to do all they can to avoid relegation.

Matchday 18 play kicks off on Saturday as Platanias play host to Levadiakos. If Platanias are to avoid what appears to be certain relegation at this point then they will need to start amassing points very quickly. Can they do so against a Levadiakos who have been struggling, but who did defeat Panathinaikos last week?

Later on Saturday, Panathinaikos are looking for any positives as they face off against Kerkyra. Marinos Ouzounidis’ side are in full crisis mode, especially considering the financial problems plaguing the club. Panathinaikos are set to play much of the remainder of the season with younger players as a mass exodus of first-teamers is expected soon. Kerkyra are second from the bottom and desperately need points heading into the final 10 matches of the season.

The remaining Sunday matches are highlighted by Atromitos’ trip to play PAS Giannina. The Peristeri club suffered a shock defeat to Panetolikos last weekend and will be vying to rebound this week at PAS. Giannina are one of only two undefeated home sides left in the league, though they have drawn six of their eight home matches this season.

Asteras seek to maintain their exceptional form away to Lamia this weekend. Asteras are increasingly looking like viable candidates for a European place, Lamia on the other hand have their main target as avoiding the drop.

Finally, Panetolikos, impressive under new manager Traianos Dellas last week against Atromitos, return home to take on 5th placed Panionios, who are in the midst of their own attempt of bringing European football back to Nea Smyrni next season.

 
by George Tsitsonis
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