News story provided in cooperation with: WOOP.GR
News story translated by: Greg Gavalas
Following wins over Asteras Tripolis and Levadiakos, AEK was able to get by a tricky trip to Panetolikos, even if the team went to Agrinio with many key players out.
Steve Belleck was the player that would open the scoring in the 18 th minute of play and the same player would put the ceiling on proceedings in the first minute of extra time to make it 0-2 for his team.
The match started with Panetolikos looking nervous and AEK looked to be very well set up in defence despite the absence of defensive midfielder Fabian Vargas making coach Kostas Kostenoglou change things up.
With Panetolikos struggling to make their presence felt in AEK’s territory, Belecks opener after wonderful exchanges with Nikos Lymberopoulos in the 18 th minute made life even tougher for the home team.
With veteran Nikos Georgeas and youngster Yiannis Konteos doing very well in their roles in midfield and AEK’s defence still holding strong, Panetolikos kept trying but couldn’t penetrate the oppositions’ line in their search for an equaliser.
Panetolikos coach Babis Tennes was forced into an early change and before 40 minutes was up he added Brazilian Andre Rocha to the game due to his ability to hold the ball and make a game for his team.
When the 2 nd half got under way, Tenne’s move was vindicated as the home team came on looking much more confident as they went looking for an equaliser.
Tennes continued to throw substitutes into the game in search of ways to get that goal his team needed. Stefanos Siontis came on for Cameroonian Olivier Boumale while the other substitute Frenchman Habib Bamogo only made life more difficult for his team after been red carded.
At the end Panetolikos’s game lacked the direction needed and as time would go on AEK looked more and more comfortable.
The match came to an end when young AEK substitute Viktor Klonaridis, with a very nice run into the oppositions penalty area took a shot which was palmed into the path of Belleck who had little trouble making the final score 2-0 in favour of AEK.
Panetolikos (Babis Tennes): Blazic, Koutromanos, Golias (46’ Siontis 68’ Bamogo), Kousas (36’ Rocha), Theodoridis, Boumale, Charisteas, Edjenguelem, Dolezaj, Mitropoulos, Camara.
AEK Athens (Nikos Kostenoglou): Arambatzis, Konteos, Manolas, Dellas, Belleck, Leonardo (60’ Sialmas), Carlos, Makos (70’ Cala), Karambelas, Georgeas, Lymberopoulos (83’ Klonaridis).
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