SOCCER

PAOK overtakes Aris, into second

paok-overtakes-aris-into-second

PAOK has moved up to second in the Super League playoffs through its road win over AEK on Wednesday, as Aris could not beat Olympiakos despite a last-minute penalty.

After a goalless second half at the Olympic Stadium of Athens PAOK stunned AEK with two goals in the second half’s first six minutes. First it was Michael Krmencik and then Stefan Schwab from the spot who signed the Thessaloniki club’s 2-1 victory at AEK. Muamer Tankovic scored AEK injury-time consolation throgh a penalty kick.

In Thessaloniki Aris failed to beat the depleted champion, with the two teams ending up in a 1-1 draw. Aris led with Dimitris Manos from the 14th minute, but Olympiakos was spared defeat with an 82nd minute equalizer by Kostas Fortounis, and a missed penalty kick by Aris’ Bruno Gama in the 90th.

Panathinaikos also failed to beat Asteras Tripolis, drawing once again 2-2 in Athens, but this has cut the distance from fourth-placed AEK – and the positions leading to Europe – to three points, with the Panathinaikos vs AEK clash on its way this Sunday.

At the Apostolos Nikolaidis Stadium on Wednesday Asteras led twice, first via Dani Suarez and then through a highly controversial penalty converted by Jeronimo Barrales, but Panathinaikos had the answer in both cases with Tasos Hatziyiovanis. The Greens also hit the woodwork twice in the final 20 minutes.

With three rounds of playoff games left to play, Olympiakos has 83 points, PAOK has risen to 61, Aris has 59, AEK 55, Panathinaikos 52 and Asteras 46.