59 matches unbeaten and counting for Under-19’s
PAOK’s Under-19 side once again showed incredible discipline and consistency on Saturday to defeat Xanthi 2-0 and extend their astonishing unbeaten run to 59 macthes at Souroti – a result which means they have not lost for two years and, of course, remain on top of the Super League with 33 points, two points ahead of second-placed Panathinaikos.
Following last weekend’s goalless draw against Olympiacos, Pablo Garcia and Miroslav Schnauzner’s team returned to winning ways, defeating Xanthi thanks to a goal in each half and not allowing the visitors so much as a sniff on goal.
PAOK made all the early running and took control of the match right from the kick-off, but initially the hosts found it tough to break through a well-organised Xanthi defence. However, the home side came close to making it 1-0 after 21 minutes with Tziolis’ prodded effort, but it was saved by the Xanthi goalkeeper. PAOK came close again on 38 minutes with a spectacular bicycle kick from Doumtsis which flew narrowly wide. The pressure finally paid off one minute before the end of normal time when Koutsias got to the ball just ahead of the visiting keeper and was fouled. Tziolis then stepped up to slot home the penalty to make it 1-0.
PAOK began the second in the same vein they finished the first, and on 46 minutes Giaxis fired in a shot which was only just off target. On 58 minutes Tachatos saw his volley saved, which lead to a corner. Tziolis sent over a precise flag-kick which was headed home by Doumtsis at the near post to double the advantage.
The tempo of the match dropped after that strike, but PAOK had another chance to score with eight minutes left from their 13th corner of the match, but this time Michailidis failed to to hit the target from a good position.
Balomenos, Tachatos, Michailidis, Panagiotou, Kaloutsikidis, Tsiggaras (80’ Grosdis), Giaxis, Doumtsis (73’ Pournaras), Tziolis, Gorteziani (73’ Panidis), Koutsias (65’ Karaberis)