Atromitos vs Xanthi
Competition: Greek Super League
Date: 18th February 2017
Kick-off: 14:00 CET
Things could hardly be any better for Atromitos before this “make or break” game against Xanthi. An unexpected 0-0 Cup draw against Olympiakos in Piraeus was followed by a big Championship win away from home against Asteras Tripolis, their new Nigerian striker, Dauda, seems to be settling in just perfect (having scored on his Championship debut last week), their top scorer, Frenchman Le Tallec, is again available to play (he was suspended last week), and all that, with a new coach at the helm, Portuguese Sá Pinto, who seems to have had an instant impact on the team’s on-field attitude.
Xanthi are in the middle of a mini crisis. A month ago, when they last won a game, they were sitting comfortably in the Top 5, their participation in the play-offs (the teams from 2nd to 5th will battle it out in a mini championship for the Champions League qualifiers’ and Europa League spots) looked almost certain, and the team was also alive and kicking in the Cup. Fast forward a month later, the Cup dream is almost gone, and even though they are still 5th in the table, it’s obvious that they need something to shake them up, or else… Good news for coach Lucescu is that Argentinean midfielder Lucero is back after his suspension.
Atromitos vs Xanthi: Head-to-head Stats
Atromitos have won four out of last five home games against Xanthi (without even conceding a goal), but Xanthi did win last year, putting an end to a truly miserable record in Peristeri (the area of Athens that Atromitos call home).
Atromitos vs Xanthi: Prediction
As previously mentioned, this is a truly “make or break” game for Atromitos. Beating Xanthi, they earn the right to start dreaming of a Top 5 finish and a precious European ticket. If they fail to win, the Championship will be practically over for them. Psychologically, things couldn’t be better for them at the moment, while exactly the opposite could be said about Xanthi. Everything considered, Atromitos should, one way or another, win this game, having playing at home as an added bonus.
Atromitos vs Xanthi: Tips
Despite trailing Xanthi by seven points, Atromitos are considered favorites to win this game, for good reason. A 1-0 or 2-0 win looks very probable, while it may be worth the risk betting on them scoring in the last fifteen minutes of the game, the period in which they have scored more than one third of their goals this season. “Both teams to score” looks rather improbable, since lately Xanthi have struggled not just to score, but even to create a decent chance. New boy Dauda seems in perfect condition to score for Atromitos.