SPORTS

Panathinaikos favorite after PAOK penalty

By George Georgakopoulos

Panathinaikos scored a precious 3-1 win at Asteras Tripolis to go three points clear at the top of the mini-league as the Super League play-offs reached their halfway point, while PAOK had three points deducted for fan action but recovered them by beating Atromitos 3-0 on Wednesday.

The Greens enjoyed their first victory at the play-offs thanks to goals by Viktor Klonaridis, Mehdi Abeid and Tasos Lagos, but also thanks to the assists by Markus Berg and the saves by goalkeeper Stefanos Kapino. Fernando Usero had temporarily made it 2-1 for Asteras.

The appeals committee of the Hellenic Football Federation rejected on Tuesday the appeal of PAOK against the penalties imposed on it for the riots at the Cup game with Olympiakos, and has deducted three points from the PAOK’s tally in the mini-league as well as slapping a two-game stadium ban plus a fine.

Consequently on Wednesday PAOK hosted Atromitos behind closed doors, but recouped the three points it lost through an imposing performance at the Toumba stadium. Bibras Natkho opened the score from the penalty spot and Miroslav Stoch with Zvonimir Vukic made it 3-0 for PAOK’s first win in the mini-league.

With three games left to play, Panathinaikos has seven points, PAOK and Asteras have four and Atromitos is on three.

On Sunday Atromitos hosts PAOK and Asteras travels to Panathinaikos.

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