Olympiakos capitalizes on archrival Panathinaikos’s humiliating draw

Predrag Djordjevic converted a first-half penalty to give Olympiakos a 1-0 home victory over league newcomer Halkidona Saturday to increase its lead at the top of the first division. Olympiakos took advantage of second-place Panathinaikos’s humiliating 0-0 away draw against last-placed Akratitos. Olympiakos now has 32 points and Panathinaikos, 28. Yesterday, the season’s surprise team, third-placed Aegaleo, defeated Aris 3-1 to move a point behind Panathinaikos. In Round 13’s remaining games, also yesterday, it was: Kallithea-OFI, 1-2; AEK-Xanthi, 3-0; PAOK-Panionios, 2-0; Ionikos-Paniliakos, 4-2; Iraklis-Proodeftiki, 2-1. Despite controlling play from the kickoff, Olympiakos squandered its scoring opportunities. Brazilian forward Giovanni hit the post in the 16th minute – and again in the 33rd. Halkidona, playing in the top division for the first time in its 73-year history, had its best scoring opportunity in the 35th when Demosthenis Manousakis found himself one-on-one with the Olympiakos keeper. His weak shot was easily saved by Dimitris Eleftheropoulos, back after a four-month absence due to injury. In the 39th, Halkidona’s Brazilian midfielder Anderson fouled Tassos Pantos in his own area and Djordjevic converted from the spot. Just a week after its easy 3-0 home win over PAOK, Panathinaikos appeared disorganized and out of focus, despite playing the league’s weakest team. Akratitos currently has a 1-4-8 record – including a 7-0 thrashing by Olympiakos – and has conceded some 32 goals so far this season. Despite this record, Akratitos goalkeeper Dimitris Raptis made many awesome saves, including punching away a powerful close-range header by Michalis Constantinou in the 31st. Akratitos’s goalkeeper also stopped two consecutive shots from 39-year-old Polish striker Krzysztof Warzycha in the 57th. Panathinaikos’s best scoring opportunity came in the 76th when Constantinou’s shot was stopped by an Akratitos defender, with Raptis out of position. (AP)