Panathinaikos v Asteras Tripolis
Having registered six from six in this first stretch of the season, Panathinaikos are comfortably sitting top of the table, six points ahead of second-placed AEK Athens. Ivan Jovanovic’s side have hit the ground running, heading to the game against Asteras Tripolis as the clear favourites. However, Jovanovic will not have three starters at his disposal, as striker Andraz Sporar, playmaker Adam Cerin and right-back Giannis Kotsiras are all sidelined through injuries.
Despite having scored just two goals so far this season, Sporar is key to Panathinaikos’ build-up play, having recorded two assists and won a couple of penalties in six games. Meanwhile, Cerin is also a vital cog in Jovanovic’s well-oiled machine, being the player who dictates the tempo for league leaders in the middle third.
As for Asteras Tripolis, they are considered Panathaikos’ bogey team in the last few years, having avoided defeat in their eight games (3W, 5D) against the Super League giants. Asteras got off to a slow – yet solid – start to the season, as they have managed to keep three clean sheets in six games. After recording three draws and one loss in their first four matches, they have bounced back with two wins on home soil in the last two matches. Tripoli are a solid team, boasting one of the most compact defences in the league.
Panathinaikos may beat them, but without Sporar or Cerin they should not be expected to cruise past Asteras. The league leaders have scored more than two goals in just one game this season. Having kept four clean sheets thus far, they have the best defence in the league with just two goals conceded. The two teams will struggle to break down each other’s defence in a game which is not expected to be open.
Aris v AEK Athens
The inauguration of their new stadium, as well as their 4-1 victory over Ionikos in the new ground’s debut have given AEK Athens a huge boost in morale ahead of a tough game away at Aris. No team has netted more goals than Matías Almeyda’s side, who are currently sitting second in the table. AEK fans have celebrated at least two goals in all but one of their first six games this season, including two comfortable wins away at weaker sides Lamia and Panetolikos.
Having lost all their last three matches against Aris, AEK will travel to Thessaloniki in their bid to record a statement win at the Thessaloniki-based side, whose home support has been their main advantage in 2022. In fact, Aris have lost just one of their last 14 games at the Harilaou Stadium despite having faced stronger sides Olympiacos, PAOK, AEK and Panathinaikos at least once each.
Aris failed to build on their huge 2-1 comeback win at home against Olympiacos, as they failed to score and lost 2-0 away at Volos in a game where they recorded 16 shots and more than 65 percent of possession.
In Alan Pardew’ third game in charge (1W, 1L), Aris will try to benefit from the fiery atmosphere on home soil to grab their sixth victory in seven home matches. The duel against AEK is expected to be even, but neither of the two teams embrace a defensive-minded style of play.
In fact, only three of the last 18 games between the two sides have ended with under 1.5 goals and as many as 14 goals were scored in the last four Aris vs AEK. Meanwhile, at least two goals have been scored in all but two of their 12 games thus far this season.
Atromitos v PAS Giannina
Following a 4-1 thrashing on home soil at the hands of Panetolikos, PAS Giannina are set to visit an Atromitos side who lost 2-0 away at Greek champions Olympiacos on Sunday. PAS have been poor so far this season following a change in the dugout and the departure of a few key players after the end of last season. In fact, under new boss Thanasis Staikos, Giannina have recorded just one win – against newly-promoted Levadiakos – in six Super League games.
No team, bar bottom-placed Ionikos, have allowed in more goals than PAS (13) so far this season, with their defence looking disjointed in the last two games, where they conceded a total of seven goals. It also has to be noted that Giannina have allowed in at least two goals in five of their first six duels this term.
Staikos has apologised to the fans after the defeat to an in-from Panetolikos, but he is well aware that he can’t afford many more losses, as his job is already in danger. Hence, Giannina will take to the Peristeri Municipal Stadium pitch in their bid to get something from a game against a solid Atromitos side.
Following a deserved defeat away at Olympiacos, Atromitos have now gone two games without finding the back of the net, which is quite odd if we take into account that only four teams have scored more goals than Chris Coleman’s side thus far. Despite playing better football this season compared to their upcoming opponents, Atromitos have celebrated just one win in three games on home soil.
Coleman’s men will push forwards from the off in their bid to bounce back after the Olympiacos defeat and this time they should be able to find the back of the net at least once. Just one of the 12 games the two teams have played so far this season and only two of the last nine games between the two sides have ended with under 1.5 goals. We should expect more than two goals to be scored in Monday’s duel in Peristeri.
Written by an Andy verified content writer
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