Not much changed at the top of the table after a tumultuous Round Nine in the Greek Super League.
On Saturday, Olympiacos failed to produce any real threat against Xanthi as they visited the city of north-east Greece, while the home side seemed happy to sick back and defend.
The result was a game that disappointed spectators, with the final whistle leaving Kiko Ramirez and his men feeling like they had completed their mission to walk away with something positive.
Portuguese manager Pedro Martins even went as far as to use fresh-off-the-injury list Mathieu Valbuena in the second half, yet his players simply couldn’t find the key to unlock the Xanthi defence.
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With first place up for grabs, PAOK hosted Panathinaikos one day later, yet failed to make much of the encounter.
The visitors shocked the champions as they dominated most of the play in the first half and maintained possession of the ball.
Their efforts were rewarded just a minute before the break, when Ghayas Zahid made the most of a poor pass by Jorge Crespo towards his goalkeeper, latching on to the ball and calmly placing it into the back of the net.
PAOK manager Abel Fereira saw that his team needed some sort of awakening and decided to introduce captain Adelino Vieirinha into the match alongside midfielder Omar El Kaddouri.
This resulted in his team gaining more possession, playing more offensively and appearing more menacing.
And it wasn’t long until the equaliser came, with skipper Vieirinha showing why he was missed so much by his team, as he found room inside the area to blast the ball into the back of the net.
But Panathinaikos had not said their final word in the evening and came up front looking for a second.
During a counter attack on the 87th minute, Insua moved the ball forward to Federico Macheda, who went one-on-one with goalkeeper Zivkovic, beating him and giving his team the lead for the second time in the night.
And just as everyone thought the game would end with the visitors emerging as winners, the home side were awarded a penalty kick after Crespo was shoved by Kourbelis.
Vieirinha took the spot kick and equalised for his team once again, securing the point for PAOK.
Meanwhile AEK bounced back after last week’s loss in the derby against Olympiacos, as they were able to beat Atromitos 3-2 in a highly entertaining match.
Portuguese striker Nelson Oliveira scored a hat-trick, with the second goal being “gifted” to him after a horrific error by young Atromitos goalkeeper Christos Mandas. OFI failed to move closer to the top after they suffered their third loss of the season at the hands of AEL, 3-2.
Next weekend, PAOK will have the difficult task of escaping Crete with a win against OFI, as Panathinaikos face AEK and Olympiacos host Atromitos.
GREEK SUPER LEAGUE ROUND NINE RESULTS
Panionios-Aris 1-1 (66′ Arce, 48′ s.o. Milojevic – 85′ Rose)
AEL-OFI 3-2 (14′ Moras, 69′ Milosavljevic, 79′ Dauda – 3′ Semedo, 7′ Tsilianidis)
Panetolikos-Asteras Tripolis 1-1 (17′ Martial – 44′ pen. Barrales)
AEK-Atromitos 3-2 (62′, 71′, 90’+3′ Oliveira – 20′ Manousos, 89′ Androutsos)
PAOK-Panathinaikos 2-2 (65′, 90’+11′ Vieirinha – 44′ Zahid, 87′ Macheda)