SLGR Matchday 15 Recap: AEK Falter, Olympiacos Winter Champions
GREEK SUPERLEAGUE - MATCHDAY 15
|Date||Home Team||Score||Away Team|
|16-Dec-17||Kerkyra||1 - 3||Atromitos|
|16-Dec-17||AEK||0 - 0||Apollon Smyrnis|
|16-Dec-17||Platanias||0 - 1||PAOK|
|17-Dec-17||Olympiacos||1 - 0||PAS Giannina|
|17-Dec-17||Asteras Tripolis||0 - 0||Panetolikos|
|17-Dec-17||Lamia||0 - 2||Larissa|
|17-Dec-17||Xanthi||1 - 1||Panathinaikos|
|18-Dec-17||Levadiakos||2 - 1||Panionios|
AGONAsport’s George Tsitsonis brings you a full recap of matchday 15 action in the Greek SuperLeague. For all the latest fixtures and result visit here. For the the up to date Supereague standings visit here.
Olympiacos earned the symbolic title of winter champions after Matchday 15 of the Greek Super League. AEK’s inability to win on the weekend meant that the Erythrolefki finished atop the league table halfway through the 2017/18 season.
Marko Marin’s 63rd minute strike gave Takis Lemonis’ men a 1-0 win over PAS Giannina as they finish the calendar year in first place of the Super League with 32 points.
AEK will have to be content to finish in second a point behind after they were unable to finish off Apollon Smirnis in a 0-0 draw at the Olympic Stadium.
PAOK are tied with AEK in second place after narrowly defeating relegation-threatened Platanias 1-0. Stelios Malezas’ close-range finish 10 minutes after the interval gave Razvan Lucescu’s side the three points.
Atromitos kept pace with the chasing pack with a 3-1 win over Kerkyra. Amr Warda scored twice while Theodoros Vasilakakis added a brilliant third to keep Damir Canadi’s team just two points off the top. Stefanos Siontis pulled it back to 2-1 for the home side in the 77th minute, but ultimately to no avail.
Panionios remained in 5th place despite a 2-1 defeat away to Levadiakos. It all looked good on 58 minutes when Giorgos Masouras gave the Nea Smyrni side the lead in Levadia. However, two goals in the final 30 minutes from Leonardo and Petros Giakoumakis gave the hosts an impressive comeback victory and allowed them to end a terrible winless run.
Xanthi and Panathinaikos shared the spoils on Sunday in a 1-1 draw. The Prasini went ahead in the 18th minute as Omri Altman lashed home a left-footed shot after a defensive clearance from a corner. But, the home side levelled it twelve minutes from time with Erik Jendrisek’s fine header.
Larisa picked up only their second away win of the season with a 2-0 victory at Lamia. Milos Deletic’s first-half brace leading the way for the Vyssini who climb to 7th in the table after overcoming a poor start to the season.
Asteras Tripolis were left frustrated in a 0-0 draw with Panetolikos. Asteras had the chances, but good goalkeeping and defensive play from the visitors kept the home side off the board. Asteras finish 6th as the first half of the season comes to a close, while Panetolikos are currently 13th.
Matchday MVP - Amr Warda (Atromitos)
The Egyptian’s brace in a three-minute span either side of the hour mark lifted Atromitos to a 3-1 win over Kerkyra. Warda’s importance to this side is huge and he has settled well with the club putting forth a series of displays full of leadership and consistency.
Goal of the Matchday - Theodoros Vasilakakis (Atromitos)
Another week, another amazing goal by this mercurial talent. Deep into injury-time, Vasilakakis received the ball 25 yards out, took a couple of touches then produced a sublime chip over the head of Kerkyra goalkeeper Fotis Koutzavasilis. A truly brilliant goal from a player who has a history of scoring wonderful ones.
Save of the Matchday - Antonis Kokkalas (Platanias)
His team may have lost again, but Kokkalas did all he could to keep Platanias in the game. Specifically, in the 44th minute he made a fantastic double stop, first going to his right to deny Dimitris Pelkas on a free-kick then immediately back to his left in order to block a goal-bound shot.
Play of the Matchday - Danny Bejarano (Panetolikos)
Though he received his marching orders six minutes from the end, Bejarano played a vital role in earning his team a point away at Asteras Tripolis. In the 22nd minute, the Bolivian did a superb job protecting the goal-line as he cleared away a sure goal by Nikos Kaltsas.
Team Performance of the Matchday - Atromitos
Even though it was against a Kerkyra who are in the relegation places, Atromitos’ win against the island club was a testament to the team’s quality and resilience. It may not have been a superb display, but it was a performance, especially in the second half, that was proof that this side is to watch in the second half of the season as they continue to challenge at the top.
Surprise of the Matchday - Larisa
Apollon Smirnis’ draw away to AEK was a surprise for sure, but Larisa take this week’s nod. The Vissini were getting throttled left and right in their travels at the beginning of the season. However, they rebounded well since climbing to 6th in the standings. Lamia had lost only two matches at home previously, while this victory was Larisa’s second of the campaign.
Disappointment of the Matchday - AEK
Surely the title will be decided in May, however it must have been a psychological blow to AEK on some level not to finish top of the table and be considered winter champions. The 0-0- draw against Apollon was not an awful performance, but AEK lacked the composure in front of goal necessary to win the game and were left in second place at the season’s halfway point.