-- Milivojevic the Hero! --
GREEK SUPERLEAGUE - MATCHDAY 8
|Olympiacos||2 - 1||PAOK|
|Varela (og) 25'
In one of the most entertaining derbies in recent years, a stoppage time goal from Luka Milivojevic gave Olympiacos the 2-1 win over PAOK at the Karaiskaki Stadium. PAOK took the lead with Varela in the 6th minute and the same player brought Olympiacos level with an own goal in the 25th minute. PAOK expressed their dissatisfaction with the referee, Aretopoulos, after the game for his calls throughout the match and for not aborting the game due to the constant stoppages from the atmosphere at the Karaiskaki Stadium.
The Olympiacos supporters created an intimidating atmosphere for their club’s derby against PAOK, but it was the visitors who quickly silenced the crowd when Malezas’ header was saved by Kapino and Varela turned in the rebound from close range. Varela was the center of attention in the 25th minute for scoring once again, this time as an own goal to pull Olympiacos level. A counterattack led by Fortounis played Ideye on the right side (was not called back for offsides), whose weak cross was wrongly met by Varela (had both Leo Matos and Glykos behind him) and the ball went into his own net. The only other notable chance before the break was Rodrigues’ curling free-kick that just went wide late in the half.
At the beginning of the second half, Omar Elabdellaoui was subbed on for Olympiacos for the first time in 6 months as an injury kept him unfit to play. After a 9-minute stoppage at the beginning of the half, due to the heavy smoke that was created from the flares in the stadium, both teams came close to finding the go-ahead goal. In the 61st minute, Campos continued to add to PAOK’s goal scoring problems when he was played in one-on-one with Kapino but failed to hit the target. Olympiacos responded with a chance of their own, but good defending and a save from Glykos prevented Seba from giving the hosts the lead from inside the penalty area. Later on, Fortounis’ strike went over the bar after a good individual effort in the 62nd minute and Athanasiadis followed in the 75th minute with a shot that missed the target. Olympiacos then pinned PAOK in their penalty area as Glykos kept his side on level terms. The Greek goalkeeper denied Elyounoussi from inside the penalty area and minutes later, Botia’s header fell victim to one of the saves of the season from Glykos. PAOK leveled out the the game with a couple of efforts from Rodrigues and the match entered an 11-minute stoppage time period. Six minutes into injury time, Figureias’ chipped cross was met by Luka Milivojevic’s header that was perfectly placed into the corner giving Olympiacos the lead. The stadium erupted and flares once again created a stoppage as PAOK requested that the game be aborted. After the smoke cleared up (ignored PAOK's requests), Aretopoulos restarted the game and Olympiacos held onto their second derby victory.
With the win Olympiacos stays atop the Superleague standings, 7 points ahead of PAOK. This is Olympiacos' second consecutive win in “derby” matches after thrashing AEK 3-0 a few weeks ago. On the other hand, PAOK released a statement expressing their frustration with the referee, Aretopoulos, for his decisions throughout the game (Ideye was offsides on the first goal and other calls) and for not aborting the game despite the atmosphere in the stadium. PAOK remain on 8 points and will host AEK next week in Thessaloniki in yet another derby match as Olympiacos travels to play Atromitos in a tricky fixture.