Aek captain Kiriakos,was our our sole representative for the national team in its away draw in Israel Last night.His partner at the back being another Aek legend in Dellas,while Basinas who had a 1/2 season spell at the ‘ENOSI’,was substituted in the 2nd half.Greece were the better team and deserved more after spurning many chances.Gekas got the goal on 42 min,Israel equalising soon after the break.The two teams now travel to Crete for their 1st game of 2nd round of qualifiers,a win putting Greece,who currently lead the group by goal difference,another step closer to South Africa.
Archive for March, 2009
Reports on the radio and on the web are starting to say that, due to the fact that EPO owe management of OAKA around 300,000 Euros from the 2007 Champions League Final in Athens, the Final for this years Greek Cup may not be played at OAKA in the end. Unless EPO pay this sum of money the final will have to be played at the second largest stadium in Athens, Karaiskaki.
This has not been confirmed so it will be followed. Some people say that this has been done on purpose, however others say that Olympiakos would not actually want any AEK fans at their stadium due to possible trouble (assuming AEK make it to the final). Well have to wait and see what will happen but hopefully the Final will be at OAKA, especially if it is an AEK-Olympiakos final.
EDIT: Reports are now saying that EPO has agreed to pay the amount.
AEK grabbed another thre points this weekend to move into one point within second place in the standings. Goals for AEK came from Djebbour, Blanco (who is now top-scorer), and substitue Edinho. Levadeiakos’ only goal came from an own goal after a Levadeiakos shot rebounded off Tacthtidis’ foot, catching Saja off guard.
Overall it was a satisfying performance by AEK, who managed to play consistently the entire match. Both Georgeas and Juanfran were dangerous down the wings and both managed to create some significant chances. Alexopoulos replaced Majstorovic who was suffering from a virus and played some solid defence along with Kyrgiakos. The defence was solid overall however they did get caught offguard on the Levadeiakos counter attacks a few times, especially down the wings.
The midfield, which at the start consisted of Scocco, Nsaliwa, Kafes, Tacthsidis, was allright, with Tachtsidis once again showing plenty of promise. Kafes fought hard and was good both defencively and offesnively, contributing with some great tackles. Overall the midfield managed to penetrate and create some chances however they often had trouble finding a player up front to play the ball to and so had to resort to playing the back pass so the ball could be played down the wings.
As the score shows, the offence once again managed to score some goals, which at this point is extremely important if we are to finish second. Djebbour also missed a great chance to score a second when a header hit the crossbar.
The substitues for the match were Pelletieri, Diouf, and Edinho.
Panathinaikos drew 1-1 away at Tripolis, and PAOK managed to get a 2-1 win over Thrasivoulos after going down 0-1 in the first half. Olympiakos beat Panionios away 3-2 and therefore confirmed themseslves as champions since it is now impossible for any other team to catch with only three games remaining.
There were plenty of fires burning at OAKA last night after soem AEK fans managed to smash into a Panathinaikos boutique burn all the scarves and shirts. Reports also say that soem of the AEK fans also manged to burn the AEK boutique at OAKA as well.
The incidents started about an hour before the game when Panathinaikos fans leaving a volleyball match at OAKA clashed with AEK fans. Riot police were soon there and of course, the presence of the polic did not do any good with regards to calming down the AEK fans. Most of the trouble was around gate 1, where Original21 sit. Flares and molotov cocktails were being thrown at the police throughout much of the match and the police responded with tear gas. No reports of any innjuries have been heard yet.
It is unfortunate that this kind of behaviour is present at football matches in Greece, and quite often, as it distracts players and prevents fans from going to watch the matches.
Aek were victorious in their 1st leg clash against Panseraikos for the semi-finals of the Greek Cup last night.We will take a 3-1 lead into Serres for the return leg next week.Goals came from Djebbour in the 20th and 40th minutes while big swedish centre-back Majstorovic sandwiched his goal in between on 38 min.The visitors equalised briefly from a direct free kick in the 24 min,a great strike which left Saja no chance.Only able to watch the 1st half,in which Aek looked a totally different side to the outfit which laboured in the 2nd half agaist Ofi on the w/end.Playing a quicker possesion brand of football Aek were able to cut out many chances,Djebbour(2 goals) and Blanco(2 assists) looking very sharp up front.Tachtsidis is continuing to provide balance down the left while Scocco had a much better 1st half on the right,maybe his best position.The central midfield of Kafes and Nsaliwa were creative and stong,more than holding their own.Defense once again our backbone,Georgeas and Juan fran were positive going forward,Kiriakos and Majstorovic our rocks at the back.According to Bajevic the 2nd half was disapointing and frustrating since we are having trouble putting 2 good halves together.Edinho had a great chance near the end with a one-on-one but couldn’t convert.You would think that the 2 goal lead should be enough to take to the 2nd leg but 1st we have a league game against Levadiakos on Sunday.
A welcome return from Pantelis Kafes was the inspiration for Aek’s 1 nil win,over relegation threatened Ofi.Kafes’ goal came in the 24th min after a cross by Blanco was blocked into the the midfielder’s path who with a 1st time shot found the net.Aek had a perfectly legitimate goal ruled out for offside just prior to the Kafes strike,when a beautiful cross by tachtsidis,was met in the air by djebbour on the 6yd box,beating the keeper.The 1st half was mainly all Aek,not through any penetrating possesison play but by long balls over the top.With Ofi playing a high defensive line,Blanco and Djebbour we’re able to constantly get-in-behind,into dangerous situations which should have provided at least 2 more goals if it wasn’t for a combination of bad luck and bad finishing.Must be mentioned that Saja had another great game in goal,twice proving heroic in that 1st half.The 2nd half was like the Aek we hated at the start of the season.With many minds seemingly on the cup semi-finals in midweek,Aek seemed content to sit back and hit on the counter attack.It almost proved disastrous as Ofi had a real go in the last 10 min and only for Saja and a crossbar did we hold out.However 3 points is 3 points,vital at this stage especially with Paok drawing overnght.Now all our focus can be on the cup against Panseraikos,interested to see if Bajevic keeps the same line-up.My Man of the match,Nsaliwa,constantly broke down many Ofi attacks,ran all day box to box and one of the few whose passes rarely went astray.
Well it’s taken a while but it looks like the bajevic influence is coming through.Unfortunately no live tv coverage in Australia and being unable to find a stream,meant that my comments are based purely on a 5 min highlight package.What shone through was the performance of the youngster Tachtzidis.With possibly the best left foot in the club since the great Vassilis Tsiartas,he really seems to be offering a different dimension down that left hand side,something missing for a long time .I honestly think we can overtake both pao and paok for that 2nd champions league spot now that we’re on a bit of a roll.Coincidently this run seems to have started with bajevic introducing more and more youngsters,whose enthusiasm seems to be rubbing off on the more established players.On a side note,an interview appeared in O KOSMOS,a weekly greek newspaper in sydney,of Nathan Burns, in which he stated that he wasn’t ready for 1st team action while Donis was in charge and that he knocked back an offer to return to Adelaide United around transfer window time.He’s also full of praise for Bajevic trusting in youth and knows that he must continue to improve to become a regular in the 1st team(great attitude).Finally,can anyone remember when was the last time AEK scored 5 before half time?
AEK put five past Panserraikos in Serres this evening, with two goals coming from Blanco, two from Djebbour, and one from Scocco. Panserraikos’ goal came from a penalty.
AEK, in what was arguably one of its best performances this season had no trouble with the team from Serres. Considering Pnaserraikos had just come back from beating Panathinaikos in Athens earlier this week, many thought this game could have been much different. But, with some great plays and passing by the midfield, there was no trouble in getting the ball up and creating chances.
Nsaliwa and Pelletierri (Kafes is still out) along with Tachtsidis and Scocco a little further up, managed to set up many plays with ease, and managed to feed Blanco and Djebbour withmany good passes and crosses. Djebbour scored another two (it was Djebbour’s birthday today).
The defence, as always, was fine. Panserraikos only managed to create a few decent chances throughout, but Saja was ready on most of them anyways. Alexopoulos replaced Kyrgiakos (who had seven yellows) for this one and did a fine job (he did get AEK a penalty from a hand ball but it was an unavoidable mistake). Majstorovic was as always, extremely solid. Missed a chance from a header off of a Scocco free kick which just barely missed. Geraldo and Georgeas took the wings at back and did fine. Juanfran should be back soon but against a team like Panserraikos, Geraldo was, although a little slow, just fine. Georgeas was quite good as he normally has been this season.
The midfield, as I mentioned earlier, was great, and was a critical part of the team’s performance today. Passes were accurate and made with confidence. Some nice crosses by Tachtsidis caused Panserraikos’ defence trouble, especially one right to Djebbour which allowed him to score with ease.
The offence was nothing less than great. Blanco scored two, one from a scramble in the box and one from a nice shot.
The subs were Hetemaj, Diouf, and Burns. Both Burns and Diouf wanted to score but by time they came in not as many chances were being created.
Overall, this game shows just how much progress the teams made since Bajevic has taken over, considering that AEK’s earlier encounter this season with Panserraikos at OAKA ended in a 0-0 draw. The team is starting to gel well together and hopefully, if we can hold on to key figures like Pelletieri over the summer, we should have a much better run in the championship next season.
By the way, we play the same team in two weeks for the cup Semi finals. Today’s result shows alot of hope, and I believe that AEK will manage to reach the Cup final with ease.
Lets see what AEK Baltimore and AEKMAN74 have to say about today’s performance.
There is a video of the goals below. Sorry for the poor quality, it is all that is available at the moment.