Panthers have work to do to save Europa League place

Panthers have work to do to save Europa League place


Maccabi Tel-Aviv 1 - 0 Panionios
Kjartansson 48'

Panionios suffered a narrow 1-0 defeat  by Maccabi Tel Aviv in the first leg of their Europa League third qualifying round tie in Israel on Thursday, but the SuperLeague club’s European dream can still be salvaged next week back in Athens.

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Maccabi passed up a host of chances throughout the 90 minutes with only Vidar Orn Kjartansson’s solitary goal to show for their endeavours on a tough night for their Greek opponents at the Netanya Municipal Stadium.

Kjartansson slammed in what proved to be the winning goal three minutes after half-time left-footed from just inside the box. That came as a blow to Panionios, from whom forward Giorgos Masouras had just missed his team’s best chance a minute earlier.

The Nea Smyrni side could not find an equaliser as Maccabi looked most likely to add to their lead later on, but the scoreline remained unchanged which sets up an intriguing second leg next week back in Athens on August 3.

Panionios will feel they still have a great chance on going through to the playoffs, given Maccabi’s slender advantage.

by Graham Wood
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