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Ilioupoli 0-1 Olympiakos (Greek Cup)

We played our postponed game with Ilioupoli this afternoon and managed to win the game with a late header taken from Marko Pantelic.
The first half started with the 150 home fans of Ilioupoli being heavily outnumbered by over 1000 of our fanatical supporters. The pitch itself was not in a great condition but it was hoped that we would be able to cope with the state of the turf and gain the victory here in order to progress further in the competition. Our fans quickly turned the Aigaleo stadium into a mini-Karaiskaki with a great atmosphere and flares being displayed, providing further support to our players.

Our first real chance of the game came in the 10th minute when a neat counter attack from Giannis Papadopoulos linked us with Jaouod Zairi on the left wing. A run up the left from Zairi followed and then a cross into the box where Giannis Papadopoulos was waiting. Papadopoulos managed to get a head onto the cross but the ball fell to the side of the net and out for a goal kick.
After the first fifteen minutes, we had started to control the game but were having some real trouble in creating any chances worthy of noting. Somewhat worryingly our players started to fall back further down the pitch after a further 10 minutes and Ilioupoli started to get some chances (albeit minor chances) of their own.

A somewhat bizarre (and totally accidental) chance on goal was made by Galitsios at 30 minutes in when he hit a long clearance out of our own area. The clearance travelled through the full length of the pitch and gave the Ilioupoli keeper such a fright that he had trouble in saving the ball correctly. This slight chance for us though was countered by Ilioupoli having a crack at our goal for themselves, stefanidis with the chance. Luckily Nikopolidis was available to save the goal and then ensure that the subsequent corner was easily dealt with.

Our final chance in the first half was created from a superb long shot from distance by our German left back Holebas. Holebas smashed the shot at goal and this proved to be so strong that Merama (the Ilioupoli keeper) couldn't save it and instead spilled the ball into Mitroglou's path for a second attempt at goal. Unfortunately Mitroglou failed to make his chances pay and the Spanish keeper managed to deflect the shot wide for a corner which was subsequently cleared.

The second half saw a much better style of play from ourselves and this was also helped by some of the changes which we made to freshen up the teams lineup with Pantelic replacing Zairi (51'), Dudu Cearense replacing Hurtado (60') and Fetfatzidis replacing Rommedahl (73').
As far as the goals themselves were concerned, we saw an increase in the chances made against the Ilioupoli goalmouth but nothing substantial to talk about. Mitroglou had another crack at opening our account but found Marama capable of withstanding his direct header on goal. Holebas also had another long range effort on goal later on in the half but with the same lack of success as his previous chance. In fact, Holebas was creating some good chances on the left and later broke into the box with a closer ranged shot on goal but again found that Ilioupoli's best player seemed to be the keeper who was having a chalmed life at the moment.

Unfortunately as the half went on, some of our shots on goal were becoming more and more desperate and although Nemeth and Giannis Papadopoulos took their efforts on goal, nothing was getting past Marama. Finally though, just as normal time was fading in the game, we got the winning goal for the game itself.

In this goal (made on the 87th minute!), Marko Pantelic had manouvered himself into the box as the ball itself was being played up the right wing by Giorgos Galitsios. Galitsios crossed the ball from the right hand edge of the box and our Serbian striker managed to get a clear contact on the ball with his head, nailing the goal with his head and literally smacking it past the keeper and into the back of the net.

The game itself finished just 6 minutes later (after 3 minutes of extra time) and we could now relax somewhat and look forward to facing Asteras Tripolis in the next round of the cup.

Olympiakos (Ernesto Valverde)
Nikopolidis, Galitsios, Potouridis, Modesto, Holebas, Zairi (51' Pantelic), Rommedahl (73' Fetfatzidis), Hurtado (60' Dudu), G.Papadopoulos, Nemeth, Mitroglou

Unused substitutes :-
Pardo, Mellberg, Raul Bravo, Fuster

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Expected lineup for Ilioupoli

We will play our postponed cup match against Ilioupoli in the Stavros Mavrothalassitis stadium in Aigaleo today (17.00 - ConnX channel).
We are expected to play a team of players both from the youth squad mixed with more experienced players who for some reason or another have not had time on the pitch recently.

Most news sites are expecting a 4-4-1-1 formation to be used with Pardo filling the goals once again and in front of him a back four of Galitsios, Modesto, Potouridis and Holebas. In the midfield, it is expected that we field Rommedahl, G.Papadopoulos, Hurtado and Zairi. The front two will be Nemeth (acting as the centre forward) and Mitroglou as the main striker.

It will be interesting to see how the team plays with this lineup today and we do not expect to see another result like last years Panserraikos. However having said that, the team mentioned above does have a lot of experience and should be fully rested and fit for this game so I am hoping to see this tie finished off with some style.
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Squad for Ilioupoli named

Following todays training session, the 18-man squad for tomorrows game against Ilioupoli was named by coach Ernesto Valverde.

Goalkeepers : Nikopolidis, Pardo

Defenders : Galitsios, Mellberg, Potouridis, Modesto, Bravo, Holebas

Midfielders :
Hurtado, Dudu, Rommedahl, Fetfatzidis, Zairi, G.Papadopoulos, Fuster

Attackers :
Nemeth, Pantelic, Mitroglou
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Preparations for Unicaja and A1 programme

Our Basketball team continued its preparation for the important Euroleague match with Unicaja Malaga by having a double training session yesterday. This is despite the fact that the game against AEK, on the day before, only finished at almost 9pm in the evening. However, coach Ivkovic is keen to improve the pay of the team even further and is therefore training the team well.
Matt Nielsen didn't make the training as he had taken a muscle rupture in his sides and although he will be re-examined by ultrasound today, he is not likely to make many minutes in tomorrows game (although he will probably still be included in the team).
Loukas Mavrokefalidis looks like he will be available for tomorrow however Zoran Erceg containues to be troubled by a sprain in his right leg and may well miss out.

Away from the Euroleague, the match programme for the next few matches were announced yesterday. As far as we are concerned, our next match will be with Panionios on the 6th November at 17.00pm. This tie will be followed by matchday 4 on the 13th November at 19.00pm against Ikarus Kallithea and then by matchday 5 against Maroussi (21st November - 12.30pm).
Our final date and time announced was for matchday 6 where we will travel to Lamia and play their team on the 28th November at 17.00pm.
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Huge demand for tickets

Despite our recent loss away from home, demand for tickets is at an all-time high. We have sold 2,200 tickets today directly from our ticketing booths and if demand continues like this then there will be none left by the end of the week.
This is the largest ticket demand that we have had so far this season and should ensure that the Giorgos Karaiskaki stadium is totally sold-out for this weekend.
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Cup Information

For this Wednesdays game against Ilioupolis (held in Aigaleo) tickets are now available for sale. Tickets can be purchased directly from the Giorgos Karaiskaki stadium (€20 each) but also ticket clips which were already used to gain admission to last Wednesday's games are also valid.

Also announced today was the schedule for the 5th round of the Hellenic Cup ion which we were drawn against Asteras Tripolis. The games (one-off game) timing will be announced later on in the week but these are the fixtures that have been drawn :-

PAOK - PAS Giannena
Olympiakos Volou - Panserraikos
Iraklis - AO Kerkyra
Panathinaikos - Trikala
Ethnikos Asteras - Diagoras
Atromitos - Kavala
Larisa - AEK
Asteras Tripolis - Ilioupoli/Olympiakos

The possible dates for the games are either 22nd December 2010 or 5th January 2011.
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Training - Monday 1st November

Our footballers took part in the training session, held today at 11.00am in preparation of the match on Wednesday with Ilioupoli. This match was postponed last Wednesday due to the weather conditions and the state of the pitch in Aigaleo and will take place on this Wednesday at 17.00pm.
Some of the players who were not included in the lineup for the Panathinaikos match had already begun training for this match (and the game on next Saturday against Panionios) and they were joined in todays session by the remainder of the team.

The only absentee from the team training was Nikos Papadopoulos who is still undergoing personal training in the gym as he overcomes a previous muscle strain..

Tomorrow we will also be training at the same time (11.00am) at the Agios Rentis training grounds.
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