Panionios Stay on Pace with Xanthi



Atromitos 1 - 2 Panionios
Umbides 49'

Nabouhane 24'
Savvidi 59'

Greece coach Michael Skibbe was an interested spectator at the Peristeri Municipal Stadium on Sunday as Panionios kept up their imperious form with a determined away win over Atromitos-a result which saw Vladan Milojevic’s team move second (tied with Xanthi), 10 points behind Olympiacos.

The German was in the stands with assistant coach Kostas Tsanas checking on the form of several national team players in view of the upcoming World Cup qualifiers which restart in March.

El Fardou Ben Nabouhane, on loan from Olympiacos, put the Nea Smyrni outfit ahead after 24 minutes via a superb free-kick which cannoned in off the woodwork.

The home side, who struggled to make chances in the first half with Panionios dominating, were gifted a opportunity to pull level just three minutes into the second half when visiting central defender Vangeli Oikonomou handled the ball in the penalty area. Argentine midfielder Javier Umbides didn’t waste the chance, stepping up to slot home the resulting penalty much to the delight of the home fans.

The equalizer didn’t disrupt the visitors’ tempo, however, and they were soon in front again when substitute Kyriakos Savvidis took advantage of poor marking to score from close range a minute before the hour mark. There could have been more goals for Panionios, but the Panthers squandered several chances with the final scoreline actually flattering the hosts.

The win keeps Panionios tied for second, along with Xanthi (won earlier today), as they sit 10-points behind the leaders Olympiacos. Atromitos are tied with Platanias for 7th on 21 points.

by: Graham Wood
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