SPORTS

PAOK snatches goalless draw at Maccabi Haifa

PAOK remained unbeaten in its Europa League group drawing 0-0 at Maccabi Haifa on Thursday in a quite forgettable match in Israel for the group stage of the Europa League.

At times PAOK appeared second-best and suffered in defense, but securing a clean sheet was the best outcome of the evening for the team of Huub Stevens given its rather poor performance.

In fact neither side was up to its best and the game was a far cry from the free-flowing match the same teams had played two weeks earlier in Thessaloniki, when PAOK won 3-2.

Miroslav Stoch had PAOK’s best chance in the game but could not beat the Maccabi keeper in the injury time added to the first half, after a wonderful through ball by Sotiris Ninis.

The Israelis came close to scoring in the 67th minute when Hen Ezra hit the upright of the PAOK goal. They pressed on in search of a winner in the last few minutes and may have deserved a penalty in the 88th, but PAOK held on for a point that all but sees it qualify to the knock-out stages of the competition.

The result takes PAOK to eight points from four games, level with AZ Alkmaar at the top of the group, with two matches left to play.