AEK overwhelm Kerkyra to return to SuperLeague summit
GREEK SUPERLEAGUE - MATCHDAY 14
|AEK||3 - 1||Kerkyra|
|Giannakopoulos (OG) 12'
|Nunes (P) 88'
AEK returned to their perch at the top of the SuperLeague on Monday after securing a comprehensive 3-1 home win over lowly Kerkyra.
An own goal by Kerkyra keeper Nikos Giannakopoulos, a Sergio Araujo strike, and Panagiotis Kone’s first goal in his second spell for AEK - the goal coming 10 years after his previous effort back in 2007 - sealed the three points for Manolo Jimenez’s team.
Kerkyra grabbed a late consolation goal from the penalty spot two minutes from full-time after Kone was adjudged to have fouled Fabio Nunes, the Portuguese picking himself up to score from 12 yards past AEK goalkeeper Panagiotis Tsintotas.
The result means AEK reclaimed the top spot they had relinquished to Olympiacos at the start of the weekend, with the Kitrinomavri now one point ahead of the reigning champions from Piraeus with 30 points.
PAOK, who were 4-0 derby winners over Panathinaikos on Sunday, are third a further point behind Olympiacos, while Atromitos are fourth just one more point adrift.
AEK made a powerful start at the Olympic Stadium, and the Athens club were ahead after 12 minutes, albeit in somewhat fortunate circumstances.
Viktor Klonaridis’ sent over a cross from the right and Giannakopoulos, under pressure from Lazaros Christodoulopoulos, couldn’t prevent the ball bouncing off him and into the empty net.
AEK kept pressing forward, sending that another goal was only a matter of time, and it duly came in the 38th minute from former Greece midfielder Kone.
The 30-year-old, who began his career with AEK and is currently on loan from Italian club Udinese, made it 2-0 with a great strike from outside the box, the ball swerving in off the post with Giannakopoulos left flailing at fresh air.
AEK continued to dominate proceedings after half-time and Argentine forward Araujo made it 3-0 after 56 minutes, making no mistake with a powerful finish when given space after latching on to a long ball.
Nunes then had the last word by slotting home from the spot after winning what replays showed to be a very soft penalty, the 25-year-old diving over Kone’s leg rather than the latter making a foul.