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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 22 September 2018
28 THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 22 SEPTEMBER 2018 SPORT Olympiacos gets last minute win against Asteras as all league contenders continue with victories A goal by Bibras Natcho saved the Pireaus team from their first loss of points in a difficult season, as no team is willing to back down The quality of football seen in these first three opening games of the season of the Greek Super League is already far superior to anything we have seen in previous years, as all top four teams (AEK, PAOK, Olympiacos and Panathinaikos) have taken the maximum of three wins from their first matches. In order to find such an occurrence in the past, one would have to go as far back as 1959, so this can only be described as a good omen for what's to come. Joining them on top of the table is Aris, a newcomer to the Super League, having made quite the comeback. But getting the three points this weekend was a daunting task for Olympiacos, as they faced the challenging opposition of Asteras Tripolis. The 'red-and-whites' tried to come out all guns blazing like they have in most of their games this season, however they were unfortunate when Kostas Fortounis' free kick effort hit the post. A 40-metre shot by Kamara on the 18th minute found the back of the net, forcing the Georgios Karaiskakis to a standing ovation and the young midfielder dedicating the goal to his mentor, Yaya Toure. However, Asteras maintained their defensive composure and hit on the counterattack on the 67th with Martin Tonso. Olympiacos struggled to break down the solid defence of the visitors and barely managed to do so, thanks to an injury time cross by Podence, headed down by Guerrero towards Natcho, who blasted the ball into the net, scoring his first ever goal with the red-andwhite jersey in a most climactic way. AEK had no trouble breezing past the opposition of Panionios, 4-0, thanks to goals provided by Ponce, Bakasetas and a double by Klonaridis, while PAOK escaped with a comfortable 1-3 win from Crete against OFI, even though they were left trailing near half time. The youngsters of Panathinaikos continue to impress, as they managed to defeat AEL away from home, 1-3, while Aris scored another easy win in front of his fans against Levadiakos, 2-0. Olympiacos, AEK and Aris are top of the table with nine points each, while PAOK and Atromitos follow them with seven (PAOK had a two point reduction from last season). As for next week's schedule, the big game between PAOK and AEK easily stands out, while Olympiacos have a difficult outing at Panionios. In the meantime, the Greek teams have European obligations, as AEK faces Ajax, PAOK meets with Chelsea and Olympiacos hosts Real Betis. SUPER LEAGUE DAY 3 RESULTS: Saturday 15 September OFI - PAOK 1-3 (22' Papasterianos / 37' Biseswar, 45'+5' Leo Matos, 53' Leo Jaba) Apollon Smyrnis - PAS Giannena 1-2 (79' El-Helwe / 41' Jean-Baptiste Leo, 60' Nikolias, 83' sent off Castro Barros) AEK - Panionios 4-0 (45'+1' Ponce, 58' Bakasetas, 84', 90'+1' Klonaridis) Sunday 16 September Xanthi - Panetolikos 1-1 (42' pen. Jendrisek / 21' Morar) AEL - Panathinaikos 1-3 (65' pen. Andoni / 28', 62' Johansson, 89' pen. Chatzigiovannis) Atromitos - Lamia 1-0 (43' Koulouris / 58' sent off Dimoutsos) Olympiacos - Asteras Tripolis (18' Kamara, 90'+2' Natcho / 67' Tonso) Aris - Levadiakos 2-0 (22' pen. Younes, 57' Garcia) SUPER LEAGUE DAY 4 FIXTURES: Asteras Tripolis - Apollon Smyrnis Atromitos - AEL PAS Giannena - Aris Xanthi - OFI Panathinaikos - Levadiakos PAOK - AEK Panetolikos - Lamia Panionios - Olympiacos DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM ISSN 1321-1676 9 771321 167062 Olympiacos got the three points against Asteras on Sunday. PHOTO: AAP VIA AP/PETROS GIANNAKOURIS Lions Halt Bergers’ Quest for Back to Back National NPL titles GEORGE STOGIANNOU Dramatic sudden death penalty shoot-outs are coming thick and fast in September for Heidelberg United. Just four days after qualifying for the Victorian NPL Grand Final by surviving a dreaded penalty shoot-out on home soil against Oakleigh Cannons, the Bergers came out the wrong end of a penalty shoot-out on foreign turf, this time in a National NPL semi-final. On Tuesday night, at Lions Park in Brisbane, the Bergers' quest to win back to back National NPL titles came to grief in a semi-final against Queensland NPL Premiers Lions FC. And just as in the game a few days before, against Oakleigh Cannons, the Bergers fell behind to a first half goal before fighting back with a second half equalizer to send the game into a scoreless extra time and a penalty shoot-out. And as in the game against the Cannons, the Bergers had a player sent off for a red card. Whilst it was Lewis Hall against the Cannons, it was key player Harry Noon who received his marching orders against the Lions after a 63rd minute melee. It didn't stop the Bergers finding a 73rd minute equalizer through a Sean Ellis header, to cancel out Nathan Shepherd's 20th minute goal for the Lions. In extra time, Ellis missed a gilt-edged chance to put the 10 man Bergers ahead when he was foiled at the last moment by Lion's keeper Luke Borean. Borean was to play an important role for the home team during the penalty shootout, scoring a penalty himself before pulling off a match-decid- Lions FC Nathan Shepherd finds a gap in the Bergers defence to give his side the lead. PHOTO: LIONSFC.COM ing save from a Reuben Way spot kick to settle the shootout 3-1 in the Lions' favour and send the Bergers home empty handed. "We just don't want the season to end, we just want to keep punishing ourselves, that's what it is," Lions' coach Warren Moon com- mented on the club website, after the match. "To be fair, Heidelberg were a class above who we've played up here in Queensland. I'm not going to say they're the best footballing side but that doesn't matter as anyone can play to whatever style they choose but what they do, they do well with the quality of players they have and they certainly caused us some problems tonight." "We got our lead and we certainly caused them problems but without really controlling the game. We found a way to keep in control on the scoreboard and keep the ball. Unfortunately we were forced to make changes and that kind of killed the way we play in a sense. The players that came on for us did a very good job for us but we lost that trust, that forward press. They created a chance and as good sides do, they punished us." "Once it went to penalties it was always going to be the Luke Borean show. I know he's always going to save at least one and as long as we put ours away we're always in with a chance to win it and again he proved that tonight." TEAM LINE-UPS Lions FC: Borean (gk), Thompson, Simic, Jarrard, Hore, Brindell-South, Solorzano, Shepherd, Carlos, Kim, Madle. Subs: Cuminao (rgk), Walpole, Maher, Glockner, Cosgrove. Heidelberg Utd: Theodonodis-Petropoulos (gk), Wilkins, Way, Cartanos, Zahra, Petrie, Byles, Noon, Cahill, Pace, Ellis. Subs: Read, O'Brien, Talevski, Ofli, Pavlidis (rgk).
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