SPORTS

AEK, PAO in disarray while PAOK flies high

AEK and, to a lesser extent Panathinaikos, are in serious trouble after the first five rounds of the Super League, while PAOK appears to be the only credible rival to Olympiakos for the title.

The Reds defeated ambitious Atromitos 1-0 at Peristeri on Saturday courtesy of a first-half goal by David Fuster, but have lost one more player ahead of the Champions League game with Arsenal in London on Wednesday: Defender Tasos Papazoglou will miss the next few weeks’ action.

Olympiakos has five wins out of five games, with PAOK and surprise-package Panionios three points behind it.

PAOK dismantled hapless local rival Aris in the Thessaloniki derby on Sunday night with a 4-1 score. Its first goal by Liam Lawrence and its fourth by Stefanos Athanasiadis were plain masterpieces.

Panionios saw off visiting AEK 1-0 on Saturday, with a goal by Leonidas Kapadais, to sink the Yellows to the last spot of the table. As a result the AEK board sacked manager Vangelis Vlachos, with former PAOK, Panathinaikos and Cyprus coach Angelos Anastasiadis the favorite to replace him.

Panathinaikos is also in trouble. The Europa League challenger failed once again to score a win — its winless streak has stretched to six games in all competitions — as it shared a goalless draw at home with Asteras Tripolis on Sunday, four days before hosting Tottenham. This was the first time its coach, Jesualdo Ferreira, and players were booed off the field by the 9,000 Panathinaikos fans at the Olympic Stadium. The Greens are just two points above the drop zone.

The best game of the weekend was the 3-2 victory of newly-promoted Platanias over Xanthi at Hania. The Thrace club led 1-0, Platanias rebounded to lead 2-1, Xanthi equalized before succumbing to the Cretan team in the end.

In other games Kerkyra scored its first win to beat OFI 2-1 on Saturday and Veria beat 1-0 Panthrakikos away on Sunsay.

On Monday PAS Giannina hosts Levadiakos.