SLGR Matchday 12 Recap: PAOK Squueze Past Lamia, Retain Lead; Oly And AEK Victorious
AGONAsport’s George Tsitsonis brings you a full recap of matchday 12 action in the Greek SuperLeague.
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PAOK maintained their six-point lead over Olympiacos as they won 1-0 at Lamia on Matchday 12 of the 2018/19 Greek Super League. Other highlights of the weekend including, Olympiacos seeing off the challenge of Panetolikos 2-1. AEK returned back to winning ways at home to Xanthi while in Thessaloniki a late penalty saw Aris and Panathinaikos draw 1-1. Atromitos meanwhile, were left frustrated again after their failure to win away to Apollon Smirnis
Below is a match-by-match breakdown of the weekend action:
Fernando Varela’s second-half goal was the difference as 10-man PAOK defeated Lamia away 1-0. It was not the best performance of the season from Razvan Lucescu’s team, but they did enough win yet another league match, their eleventh of the season, despite being reduced to 10 men in the second half due to Jose Canas’ red card.
Olympiacos started well in a 2-1 defeat of Panetolikos. The Erythrolefki came out of the gates quickly, taking a 2-0 lead inside 25 minutes with goals from Daniel Podence and Miguel Angel Guerrero. The home side’s performance slipped in the second half as Panetolikos came back into the match despite being down to ten (Dimitris Chantakias, red card - 53rd minute). Alhassan Kamara, brought Panetolikos back into the match with his goal in the 70th minute, but Olympiacos held on for the victory.
Away to the league’s bottom club Apollon Smirnis, Atromitos were disappointing in a 1-1 draw. It was the second weekend in a row that Damir Canadi’s side dropped points after defeat last week to Olympiacos. Apollon took the lead in the 26th minute through Panagiotis Triadis before Kostas Kotsopoulos equalized for the visitors just minutes before the break. Both teams had chances to win the match in the second half, however, the deadlock remained.
Goals from Ezequeil Ponce and Marko Livaja secured a 2-0 win for AEK at home versus Xanthi. The Kitrinomavri struck as early as the 8th minute through Ponce, but had to wait to seal the victory in injury-time when Livaja scored. AEK enter the top four with the victory while Xanthi lose their third in a row after previously winning four consecutive matches.
An injury-time penalty conversion from Tasos Chatzigiovannis gave Panathinaikos a 1-1 draw with Aris. The match in Thessaloniki seemed to be drawing to a close with a win for Aris. However, just like last weekend when Aris staged an improbable comeback, this time they were on the receiving end of one. Hamza Younes gave the home side the lead, also from the penalty spot, after just 15 minutes. The match ended with no love lost between the two sides with several yellow cards down the stretch as well as a red card for Panathinaikos’ Federico Macheda minute from time.
Larisa used a ten-minute explosion in the second half to score three goals en route to a 4-2 win over Panionios. Finely poised at 1-1 at the half, Larisa put three past their shell-shocked opponents midway through the second half. Marko Nunic bagged a brace for the Vissini who also received goals from Radomir Milosavljevic and Kenan Bargan. For Panionios, who played with 10 men after Sotiris Tsiloulis’ 39th-minute expulsion, the goals came from Giorgos Masouras and Fiorin Durmishaj.
Elsewhere, Stefanos Athanasiadis scored his first goal for PAS Giannina and they came back to draw 1-1 with OFI. Athanasiadis netted six minutes from the end providing a reply to OFI’s goal, which was scored by Giannis Potouridis early in the second half. Levadiakos slumped to another defeat, this time at home 2-0 to Asteras Tripolis. After Souleymane Sawadogo received his marching orders five minutes into the second half, Asteras scored the decisive goals with Martin Tonso (64’) and Marc Fernandez Gracia (90’) getting on the scoresheet.
Matchday MVP - Sokratis Dioudis (Panathinaikos)
Sunday’s match away to Aris saw Dioudis in inspired form. Chatzigiovanni’s panenka-style penalty may have stolen the headlines, but the main protagonist was the 25-year-old. Dioudis reeled off a series of impressive saves to keep Panathinaikos in the game and ultimately put them into a position to gain a point in Thessaloniki.
Goal of the Matchday - Radomir Milosavljevic (Larisa)
A thunderous strike from Larisa’s Milosavljevic takes this week’s award. Kenan Bargan’s great work down the left saw him play a fine cutback to the Serbian midfielder whose well-struck left-footed blast hit the underside of the crossbar before slamming into the net.
Save of the Matchday - Vladimir Bajic (Levadiakos)
The Levadiakos goalkeeper was in inspired form even if he could not prevent his team from losing at home against Asteras Tripolis. Amongst the series of superb saves he made, Bajic’s best was a short-range reflex tip over the bar after Nikos Kaltsas had put his hard shot on target.
Surprise of the Matchday - Apollon Smirnis
It has been an extremely rough side for Apollon supporters so far this season with little reason to smile. Poor results have led to a few coaching changes already as the team prop up the rest of the Super League in last place. Coming off a 5-1 thrashing at the hands of Panathinaikos last weekend, few expected much resistance this week against Atromitos. In Rizopouli though, under new manager Babis Tennes, Apollon were superb, producing a display that gives them hope of fighting against relegation.
Disappointment of the Matchday - Panionios
Conceding four goals against Larisa underlined a poor performance by Panionios, one which cost manager Jose Anigo his job. This was another week that showcased a team that blows hot and cold, a stunning lack of consistency that could undermine their chances of fighting for a European berth.