Olympiakos stays top of the league

Liberian striker Zizi Roberts scored one goal in each half as defending champion Olympiakos Piraeus beat Aegaleo 4-3 away on Sunday to retain the lead in the Greek first division soccer league. After five rounds Olympiakos has 13 points, one point ahead of AEK Athens in second place. In a late Sunday match, AEK beat crosstown rival Panathinaikos 2-0 on goals from Vassilis Tsartas and Demis Nikolaidis. Playing in heavy rain which hampered the players’ movements, Olympiaos took the lead in the 13th minute. Roberts exploited a mistake by Aegaleo’s keeper Dimiris Rizos and sent the ball into the empty goalmouth. But a minute later, Nikos Nikolopoulos leveled with a header off a center from Liberian midfielder Oliver Makor. Olympiakos nearly scored in the 28th minute, but Costas Papoutsis cleared the ball off the line. Then, four minutes before the end of the first period, Yiannis Chloros put Aegaleo ahead with a shot from the edge of the box. In the first strike of the second half, the defending champions leveled with a header, again by Roberts, off a cross from Stelios Yiannakopoulos. It was Roberts’s fifth goal of the season. Alexis Alexandris gave Olympiakos the lead in the 74th minute, but Aegaleo leveled 3-3 with Tomas Makris three minutes later. Ten minutes before the end of the match, Yiannakopoulos converted a disputed penalty to make the final 4-3. PAOK Thessaloniki, one of the four Greek league contenders, continued its mediocre league performances, and was held to a 1-1 draw by Ionikos in Nikea. It was the third tie in five rounds for PAOK, which also had one victory and one loss. PAOK is in ninth place in the 14-team standings with six points. Christos Mikes gave Ionikos the lead in the 18th minute and Pandelis Kaffes equalized in the 44th. PAOK, which has advanced to the third round of the UEFA Cup, played the last 33 minutes with 10 men, after Nigerian defender Ifeanyi Udese saw a second yellow card. (AP)

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