Panionios downs PAOK, Lamia holds Olympiakos in Cup


Panionios beat PAOK and Lamia held Olympiakos to a score draw in the opening games of the quarterfinals of the Greek Cup in midweek, while AEK and Asteras Tripolis have taken a clear advantage after the first leg.

At Nea Smyrni Panionios defeated PAOK 2-1, as it came back from a Karol Swiderski goal for PAOK to capitalize on the visitors’ errors via strikes by Fiorin Durmishaj and Dimitris Stavropoulos.

Lamia shared a 3-3 draw at home with Olympiakos on a rain-soaked pitch on Wednesday. The host led with Nikos Tsoukalos; Olympiakos equalized with Gil Dias but an own goal by Andreas Bouchalakis restored Lamia’s lead.

The Reds then went ahead 3-2 through goals by Franco Soldano and Ahmed Hassan before Tsoukalos scored his second on the night for the final 3-3.

AEK was the only one of the favorites to win, beating Atromitos 1-0 at Peristeri on Thursday thanks to a controversial penalty won by Christos Albanis and converted by Ezequiel Ponce, on the debut of returning coach Manolo Jimenez on the AEK bench.

Ponce left AEK with 10 men in the last half-hour of a game that was stopped for some 20 minutes due to floodlight failure.

Earlier on Thursday Asteras Tripolis won 1-0 at second-division Ergotelis through a Martin Rolle goal.

The return games are scheduled for February 26-27.