Comeback and return to winning ways
They may have needed to find themselves on the ropes again, but this time PAOK responded brilliantly by raising their game, scoring goals, and returning to winning ways, with a 3-1 win over Volos on Matchday 16 of the Super League Interwetten at the Toumba.
The match against the Magnesia club started completely differently to the previous two away matches against Larissa and Atromitos. PAOK did not make its characteristic strong start and Volos, pressing high up the pitch, managed to dominate the early stages, threaten the hosts’ goal, and take the lead through Kakoiou in the 11th minute.
PAOK needed about a half-hour to come to their senses, but in the 29th minute, when Stefan Schwab equalized from the penalty spot, and thereafter, the Double-headed Eagle did not look back.
With composure, patience and concentration, the home side did not give their opponents a sniff, producing a solid defensive display while methodically seeking goals at the other end.
In the second half, Vieirinha and Omar El Kaddouri came off the bench, and both players helped the midfield from an attacking point of view. PAOK missed a great opportunity to score in the 56trh minute with Warda’s snapshot flashing wide, while Renato fired wide at the other end from a good chance for Volos in the 62nd minute – the visitors’ only significant effort in the second half. After 65 minutes, PAOK once again found a solution from an aerial raid.
In what was a carbon copy goal from the recent derby match against Panathinaikos at the Toumba, Swiderski flicked on at the near post and Ingason arrived with perfect timing at the back post to beat Cleyman with a header to make it 2-1.
The visitors did not give up the ghost and committed more players forward in the hope of getting an equalizer, and that opened up the game more, allowing PAOK to capitalize. And the home side did just that through Krmencik, who came off the bench and threatened to score on three occasions before he eventually slotted in his first goal for the club to make it 3-1.
With that, PAOK got back on the winning trail and is now preparing for the upcoming derby with Olympiacos on Wednesday (13.01) at the Toumba Stadium.
Volos: Cleyman, Ferrari, Sanchez, Mitoglou, Grilo (86’ Dentakis), Rienstra, Kiakos (67’ Martinez), Renato, Bartolo, Douvikas, Perea (64’ Ninis).