AEL Larissa vs Panathinaikos
Competition: Greece Super League
Date: 19 February 2018
Kick-off: 18:30 CET
AEL Larissa should be glad they left Thessaloniki last weekend having lost “only” 3-0 to PAOK. The hosts had a dozen chances to score, and the final 3-0 feels rather poor looking back on how the whole 90 minutes went. It was AEL’s third defeat in a row away from home, but all against good to great opponents. As hosts, they have lost just once in this season’s Super League campaign, to Olympiakos, in times when the Piraeus side were flying from one win to another. Larissa are 12th in the table, they remain at a safe – more or less – distance from the relegation zone, and they have qualified for the Greece Cup semis, when they will be facing AEK Athens. A win over Panathinaikos will actually push them higher than their famous opponents in the table, an extra motive for them to do well. As previously mentioned, they have lost just once at home this season, in the Super League, but have won just one of their last five matches as hosts.
Panathinaikos were not bad last weekend at PAS Giannina, but they dearly missed a real striker, someone who would make use of the chances they created. That’s exactly what PAS had, a real striker who knows how to send the ball in, Pedro Conde, who decided the outcome of the match more than any other player on the pitch. Panathinaikos saw Conde score twice in the first half, in a period during which the Greens lost at least two major chances to score themselves. Ironically, it was an own-goal that put them back into the game in the second half, as if PAS Giannina’s defender did what Panathinaikos attackers were unable to do. Mystakidis, a recent addition to Panathinaikos’ roster from PAOK (on loan), was one of those who missed big chances. Adding injury (literally) to insult, he got injured, and will stay sidelined for at least three weeks.
Previous five matches:
PAOK vs AEL Larissa 3-0
AEL Larissa vs PAS Giannina 3-2
AEL Larissa vs Panionios 0-0
Atromitos vs AEL Larissa 1-0
PAS Giannina vs AEL Larissa 1-2
PAS Giannina vs Panathinaikos 2-1
Panathinaikos vs Panetolikos 0-0
Apollon Smyrnis vs Panathinaikos 0-0
Panathinaikos vs Kerkyra 4-0
Levadiakos vs Panathinaikos 3-2
AEL’s next game is again at home, next Sunday, versus Platanias. A day earlier, Panathinaikos will have hosted Lamia (both Greece Super League matches).
AEL Larissa vs Panathinaikos: Head to head Stats
Last season, AEL and Panathinaikos drew 0-0 in Larissa. Before that, they hadn’t played there since 2011 (a 2-0 AEL win).
AEL Larissa vs Panathinaikos: Prediction
As previously mentioned, AEL have lost just one game at home this season in the Super League, and I will be surprised if they lose to Panathinaikos.
AEL Larissa vs Panathinaikos: Betting Tips
Draw feels like the most probable result. It pays 2.75 (the fact that’s it’s well below 3.00 gives you an idea how probable it seems). I don’t expect more than two goals, but “under 2.5” pays too little. Even “no” on “both teams to score” pays relatively little, 1.61. I’m staying with draw, at 2.75.
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