AEK 1-3 Mallorca
One final friendly loss for our team before our first Europa League match against Vaslui.
Below is the video of our goal, scored by Leonardo although it deflected of a number of players.
A 3-1 loss at this point really isn’t the most encouraging result but it must be pointed out that the squad playing today was largely a B-Team. The original lineup was Saja, Georgeas, Manolas, Alves, Juanfran, Manduca, Iordache, Yahaya, Leonardo, Gentzoglou, and Blanco. Blanco was a lone striker with Manduca, Leonardo, and Iordache behind him. Playing defensive midfield behind them was Yahaya and Gentzoglou. Manolas and Alves were playing centre back and Georgeas was right back while Juanfran while was left back.
As you can see, many key players were not playing including Kyrgiakos, Makos, Majstorovic, Djebbour (all for National Team Duty), Pavlis, Tachtsidis, and Scocco (I might have missed some as well). Bearing that in mind, we can’t be surprised to see we got a loss here. I am confident that had we played our main squad we could have won this one by a score of 3-0 at least. Mallorca was not a strong team and would have hardly caused us any trouble if we had a stronger defence in place.
Saja did as good as he could. He saved a penalty but unfortunately could not save the rebound. I personally think goal keeping is the least of our worries.
Georgeas, Manduca, and Leonardo all looked good. Leonardo will become a great player after a few more games with the team. Manduca has kept up his good performances from previous friendlies and Georgeas was as solid as ever (for the most part).
Iordache must improve. He played alright however he really should be providing more to the team. Maybe with a stronger lineup around him he will be better.
Yahaya was great today. He covered alot of distance, took care of bussiness on both ends of the pitch, provided some good passes, defended well, and overall proved that he must be kept.
Manolas was not good, perhaps he is still having trouble with pressure. He didn’t seem to have the confidence nessecary. I don’t see him starting or playing much this season. Alves was the better of the two centre backs today, and he provided some great tackles and did as much as he could. He isn’t starting material though he will be good to have on the team, at least as a backup.
Juanfran showed some good moments but he couldn’t cross well today. He overshot all his crosses and Blanco or any of the forwards couldnt reach any of the balls.
One thing I really want to mention is Lagos, yes LAGOS, played today! I can’t remember the last time I’ve seen him in action. And the even bigger suprise? He played some good football. I think there are many good things to come from him. Considering it was his first game in a while (well, a year and a bit actually) he showed some good ball control and I think we can expect to see him more, at least when he is needed. He seemed match fit, even though he only played one half.
Well, as I said, it was basically a game for Bajevic to try out some of the younger players and give them a chance to play some more. We lost but I don’t think we should be too dissapointed. In fact, we actually saw some moments of good football from this squad. They controlled the first tewnty minutes and pressured often, creating good chances and weaving together some good passes. Other times however, the players seemed to fall asleep and forget about the match.
Unless something comes up we won’t be playing any more games until our Europa League qualifier so hopefully Bajevic would have gotten the team ready by then.
Some other news, it unfortunately does not look like we will be signing the South African right back we were about to sign as his club in South Africa have suddenly risen their asking price. It is a shame, but I guess we will have to wait for someone else. I can’t see many more, if any, transfers happening now until January.